Global investments in clean energy increased by roughly 30% in 2010. Also, funding is finalized for a Minnesota wind farm and how the nuclear reactor crisis in Japan is affecting the East coast.
China and Germany Lead G-20 Energy Investments
Global investments in clean energy amounted to $243 billion, a 30 percent increase when compared to the previous year, in 2010. China, Germany, Italy and India were among the highest contributing nations of the G-20 in terms of private investments. China and Germany took first and second place with the United States falling to third with a contribution of $34 billion. The UK declined the most, falling from fifth to 13th. Italy came to fourth from eighth place with $13.9 billion in clean energy financing. Although wind power remained the favored technology, the solar sector also grew with a record $79 billion, a 53 percent growth from 2009. The data was gathered and published by Pew Charitable Trusts and its partner Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Financing Secured for MN Wind Farm
Juhl Wind has secured financing for its Valley View Wind Farm in Southwestern Minnesota. The 10-MW facility is estimated to cost $21.7 million. The company plans to use five Gamesa wind turbines to complete its wind farm. The project, which has been under construction since October 2010, is expected to be operational this spring.
Effects of Japanese Nuclear Reactors Felt in East Coast
As the nuclear crisis in Japan continues to unfold, the effects are beginning to spread across borders. Last week, reports emerged claiming that the radiation has spread to the United States on both coasts. Furthermore, the rainy weather on the East for the past couple days has led to worries about radiation exposure in several areas including Pennsylvania. On Friday March 25, concentrations of Iodine-131 were found in rainwater samples collected from Pennsylvania’s nuclear power plant facilities. However, the public was assured that the contamination was still 25 times below a level that could cause any damage. However, each state is taking appropriate precautions coordinated by the EPA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
DOE Launches New Energy Challenge
The DOE is launching yet another energy challenge in an effort to comply with the President Obama’s Startup America Initiative. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced “America’s Next Top Energy Innovator” competition that will allow start-up companies to build businesses based on technologies developed by the National Laboratories for $1,000—saving companies anywhere from $10,000 to $50,000. The DOE is reducing the cost and paperwork required for these companies to license the patents held by the National Labs.
California Hosts Green Conference
California has been the hub of the green movement and leads the nation in energy conservation. The state is soon to host the Green California Summit and Expo from April 18 to 20 at the Sacramento Convention Center. The summit offers an opportunity for leaders in government, education, non-profit and private sectors to discuss innovations in technology and policy to implement green solutions. Topics include smart grid improvements, alternative fuel options and a new mandatory green building code.
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