EU Summit: Climate is a weighty burden

October 31, 2009

The Brussels summit provided a sharp foretaste of the hard bargaining the world can expect at the crucial Copenhagen summit on climate change in December.

There is still an east-west divide in the EU over national contributions to climate targets, with former communist countries such as Poland and Hungary arguing against specific funding pledges at this stage.

Another lesson from this summit is that the new president of the European Council, whoever that turns out to be, will need to be a skilful consensus-builder and no mere figurehead… Read more by Laurence Peter, BBC News

Preparing for the Copenhagen summit there’s a very informative ZDF climate video wherein (after 2 hours) the Sahara DESERTEC project is being pleaded for. 

Supplementary: Global Investments Into Solar Energy

haplif – Frank Kalder (Global Haplifnet)

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“Learning for Leading” – ESMT, Berlin

October 12, 2009

 

Referring to previous ESMT & USW mentions by Haplif & Haplifnet, e.g., Navigating in Turbulent Times, a fresh

Newsletter

focusing on Learning for Leading is available.

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European School of Management and Technology

ESMT Schloss Gracht Campus – USW Network

 

 haplif – Frank Kalder (Global Haplifnet)


Memories of Kyrgyzstan by a German repatriate

October 8, 2009

 

Inbeli – German ancestors, Russian dad – grew up in Kyrgyzstan. At age 22 she and her family repatriated, living meanwhile since eight years in Rhineland-Palatinate. Although she speaks fluently German, and appreciates the western way of life, she still feels pretty much homesick.

Kyrgyzstan is a landlocked country in Central Asia, bordering Kazakhstan, China, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

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The mountainous region of the Tian Shan covers over 80% of the country (Kyrgyzstan is occasionally referred to as “the Switzerland of Central Asia”), with the remainder made up of valleys and basins.

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Despite the backing of major Western lenders, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, Kyrgyzstan has had economic difficulties following independence. Initially, these were a result of the breakup of the Soviet trading bloc and resulting loss of markets, which impeded the republic’s transition to a free market economy. Kyrgyzstan is rich in mineral resources, e.g., are substantial deposits of coal, gold, uranium, antimony and other valuable metals… (Wikipedia)

Kyrgyzstan has undergone a pronounced change in its ethnic composition since independence. The percentage of ethnic Kyrgyz increased from around 50% in 1979 to nearly 70% in 2007, while the percentage of European ethnic groups (Russians, Ukrainians and Germans) as well as Tatars dropped from 35% to about 10%.

Nowadays, being a secular state, Kyrgyzstan’s population is 75% Muslim, 20% Russian Orthodox and 5% other. However Islam (overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim) has exerted a growing influence in politics.

USA/EU/NATO/Afghanistan Implications

Since the 2001 war in Afghanistan, central Asia has been at the centre of a strategic competition between the US and Russia. The rivalry is reminiscent of the 19th-century conflict between imperial Britain and tsarist Russia, played out in the velvet mountains of the Hindu Kush, and famously dubbed “the Great Game”… The traditional supply route through Pakistan’s tribal areas and the mountainous Khyber Pass has become increasingly vulnerable to Taliban attack. Kyrgyzstan, meanwhile, is in deep economic trouble. The small country faces rising unemployment, a growing trade deficit, and is struggling to pay its gas and electricity bills (excerpt, Guardian UK, Feb 4, 2009).

Kyrgyzstan moved, a few days ago, to allow French and Spanish troops to return to its Manas air base, a staging post for U.S.-led military operations in Afghanistan… (Washington Post/Reuters, Oct 5, 2009) 

Supplementary:

CBT Kyrgyzstancommunity based tourism

Osh – second largest city in Kyrgyzstan, reputedly 3000 years old

Kyrgyzstan and Manas Air Base – article & 26 slides

Lake Issyk-Kularticle ▪ photos ▪ map

 

 haplif – Frank Kalder (Global Haplifnet)


Global Investments into Solar Energy

October 2, 2009

 

Solar Millennium is specialised in parabolic trough power plants, a proven and future-oriented technology, in which the Group holds a globally leading position. Besides the three Andasol projects in Spain, a parabolic trough power plant is being built in Egypt and various further projects with an overall capacity of more than 2,000 Megawatts worldwide are in the planning phase with focus on Spain, USA, China and North-Africa. In the future, solar thermal power plants in the south will contribute to middle Europe’s electricity supply… Read more

Share price development: Frankfurt

The Energy System Conversion

Solar thermal power plants are the only solar technology capable of large scale power generation. Although electricity from photovoltaic cells is well-suited to decentralized solutions, it still contributes less than one tenth of a percent of the power generation in Germany despite massive support. In contrast, solar thermal power plants are able to generate solar energy in large quantities on a cost-effective basis. Solar power from sunny countries can be transported to less sunny regions. This strategy helps to make power supplies both more environmentally-friendly and more sustainable, as well as provide stability due to its diversified energy mix and reduction of dependency on fossil fuels. Solar energy is almost inexhaustible… (Energy Market)

DESERTEC – EUMENA

Siemens announced in July that it is participating in the Desertec industrial initiative. Siemens is developing here together with other industrial companies on a technological and financial concept for providing clean power for Europe and Africa from solar-thermal power plants in the Sahara and wind farms in northern Africa. (AZoM.com) 

The Desertec Concept describes the perspective of a sustainable supply of electricity for Europe (EU), the Middle East (ME) and North Africa (NA) up to the year 2050. It shows that a transition to competitive, secure and compatible supply is possible using renewable energy sources and efficiency gains, and fossil fuels as backup for balancing power…

 Supplementary:  Desertec – Strom aus der Wüste

haplif – Frank Kalder (Global Haplifnet)


EU – Wüstenstrom und Klimaschutzverbesserung

October 2, 2009

 

Desertec – Strom aus der Wüste: Chance oder Fehler? – Exzerpt –

Während Wüstenstrom die Stromerzeugungskosten senkt, sorgen die sinkenden Kosten für dezentrale Photovoltaik dafür, dass die Stromkonzerne mit ihrer Preisgestaltung in Schranken gewiesen werden. Eine Schlüsselrolle bei DESERTEC spielt der zügige Aufbau eines verlustarmen, von den Energieversorgungsunternehmen unabhängigen, Hochspannungs-Gleichstrom-Übertragungsnetzes (HGÜ), ein “Supernetz”. Es wird also nicht nur EINE Leitung und EIN großes solarthermisches Kraftwerk geben, sondern, wie man auf unserer Karte sieht, ein recht dezentrales Netz mit genügend Reservekapazitäten für den Ausfall von Leitungen und Kraftwerken. Da HGÜ-Leitungen ohne wesentliche Mehrkosten unterirdisch verlegt werden können und keine nennenswerte elektromagnetische Strahlung aufweisen, sind hier im Gegensatz zu Wechselstrom keine größeren Widerstände von Anwohnern zu erwarten.

Wenn südeuropäische Länder Einspeisegesetze für Wüstenstrom schaffen und etwa fünf Jahre später der erste Strom über das Mittelmeer importiert wird, kann der Klimaschutz in Deutschland schon vor der Fertigstellung des europäischen Supernetzes davon profitieren: Sobald deutsche Stromexporte nach Südeuropa nicht mehr benötigt werden, können alte Atommeiler und Kohlekraftwerke in Deutschland schneller vom Netz gehen. Von E.ON gibt es bereits eine aktuelle Pressemeldung, in der Investitionen in solarthermische Kraftwerke in Südeuropa und Nordafrika angekündigt werden, während man sich gleichzeitig darauf einstellt, die Netze abzugeben… Mehr dazu von Michael Straub, Marketingleiter der DESERTEC Foundation

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Solarthermische Kraftwerke, Photovoltaik, Windkraft, Wasserkraft, Biomasse und Erdwärme; Hochspannungs-Gleichstromtrassen (rote Linien):

 Quelle: Solar Millennium, TREC

 

Nachtrag: Global Investments into Solar Energy

haplif – Frank Kalder (Global Haplifnet)