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Bosch turns its back on solar power

Germany’s Bosch has decided to abandon its solar energy business for good. The engineering and electronics company confirmed its plan on Friday, stressing that there is no possible way to make the business last amid prevailing overcapacity and enormous price pressure in the market. The move came just days after China’s Suntech Power, one of the world’s largest producers of solar panels, confirmed bankruptcy after missing a $541...

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Ballard deploying fuel cell systems in China and Europe

Ballard Power Systems and its partner Azure Hydrogen Energy Science and Technology Corporation will be displaying a 175-kilowatt fuel cell system at the fifth World Hydrogen Technologies Convention in Shanghai. Ballard has sold the CleanGen distributed generation fuel cell system to Azure as part of its partnership with the Beijing-based company. Azure and Ballard’s partnership focuses on the development and...

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Suntech closing down operations in Arizona facility

Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. is stopping production at its Goodyear, Arizona solar panel manufacturing facility. In a statement, the Chinese company cited higher production costs exacerbated by import tariffs on solar cells and aluminum frames imposed by the United States government, and global solar module oversupply as the deciding factors for the closure of operation in Arizona. The facility will officially...

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Insurance industry to drive clean energy investments – Swiss Re

Insurers have a key role to play in accelerating investments in low carbon technologies, suggested a new report by Swiss Re. Using six climate change scenarios, the report found that the global energy sector is confronted with a sharp increase in future losses due to higher investments in newer and less mature technologies, including renewables. This is where insurers come in, offloading some of the risks of clean technology...

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$700 billion a year in investments needed to combat climate change

Approximately $700 billion in investments is needed annually in order to mitigate climate change and secure green growth, estimates a new report co-authored by Green Growth Action Alliance and the World Economic Forum. This large investment is needed to develop clean energy infrastructure, sustainable and low-carbon transport, energy efficiency in buildings and industry, and forestry in such a way as to vital to pay...

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Masdar to build renewable energy-powered desalination plant

Masdar, an Abu Dhabi-based renewable energy company, has unveiled a pilot program to test and develop advanced energy-efficient seawater desalination technologies which will use renewable energy sources. The pilot program, initiated through the effort of General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces, aims to address water security...

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Google invests $200 million in Spinning Spur wind project

Google’s renewable energy portfolio continues to expand with the computing giant announcing the closure of an equity investment of $200 million in a wind farm in west Texas. The 161-megawatt Spinning Spur Wind Project in Oldham County was built by renewable energy developer EDF Renewable Energy, which will remain an owner and manager of the project. The facility began operations on December 20 and has been supplying...

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Natural disasters cost $160 billion of damages in 2012 – Munich Re

Natural disasters in 2012 cost $160 billion worth of losses worldwide, according to Munich Re, the world’s largest reinsurance firm. Global insured losses, on the other hand, cost $65 billion. Approximately 67 percent of the total losses and 90 percent of insured losses globally were from the United States, with Hurricane Sandy coming in as the single-costliest disaster of the year with $50 billion in overall losses and $25 billion in insured losses. “Had it not...

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Algae biomass production moves forward in Western Australia

A pilot production facility for algae biomass in Western Australia secured a $2 million Australian dollar grant to advance its operations. Aurora Algae, which produces algae-based products for the pharmaceutical, nutrition, aquaculture and fuels market, grows and processes algae biomass in six 4,000-square-meter ponds in a facility in Karratha, Western Australia.

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Consumers and corporations favoring renewables according to polls

Two surveys backed by wind energy company Vestas show the continuing rise in renewable energy interest from both consumers worldwide and investing corporations. The Global Consumer Wind Study 2012, prepared by TNS Gallup, says 85 percent of global consumers want more renewable energy, with 49 percent willing to pay more for products made with renewable energy. Participating in the survey are 24,000...

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