The Middle East, Caribbean, and Oceania account for 283 billion cubic meters of freshwater demand, and solar- and wave-powered desalination can be the low-cost solution, according to Lux Research. Desalination — converting sea water into fresh water — will grow at 8 percent annually to 140 million cubic meters daily in 2020, Lux predicts, reflecting soaring demand in some parts of the world and growing viability of renewable energy technologies.
“Going off the grid” was once an expression that brought to mind hippies, survivalists and others on the fringes of society looking for a life without the intrusions of government and big business.
Today, though, advances in technology and concerns with the age and condition of the nation’s electrical production and distribution network are making it increasingly popular to avoid “the grid” through the growing use of renewable energy sources such as the sun and wind, even in government and big business.
Driven by market forces and evolving customer demands, Hawaii has, in a relatively short time, integrated a significant amount of distributed renewables. To better understand the renewable transformation currently underway in Hawaii, the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) and energy consulting firm ScottMadden Inc. led a group of international energy industry executives to explore the state’s renewable energy market through face-to-face meetings with thought leaders and decision makers — including the Hawaiian electric utility, transmission and renewable energy industries; government, trade, and industry associations; and market experts — who are adapting to the state’s dynamic and challenging environment.
The success of solar plus storage is defining the growth potential of renewable energy. Solar plus storage is a key necessity for solar to overcome limitations like intermittency and the lack of power after dark.In fact, Lux Research predicts that distributed storage for solar systems will be worth $8 billion in 2026, as solar combines with storage to continue its remarkable growth.
Across Asia, companies and governments are adopting more renewable energy as concerns over climate change and carbon emissions move up the development agenda. The Asian Development Bank estimates that the share of renewables in electricity generation in the region will increase from 1.9 per cent in 2010 to 7.1 per cent in 2035.As these new sources such as wind, solar and hydropower become part of the electrical grid, they also introduce instability as energy is produced only under certain weather conditions. Utility operators must therefore find a way to keep the grid stable, says Sven Wagner, Director, ConnectedEnergy at Bosch Software Innovations in a recent interview.
As global warming worsens condition, the climate summit held in Paris discussed ways on how to properly deal with this worldwide crisis. And one country announced their outstanding performance in dealing with it – Uruguay’s smart move by shifting into renewable energy.In just 10 years, Uruguay has shifted to getting 95% of its electricity from renewable energy. They use wind and solar energy to back-up their hydro power plants which was able to sustain the country’s electricity demands.
As the need for the integration of renewable energy into the power grid grows, Asia will emerge as dominant region for energy storage, according to Frost & Sullivan. That need is expected to drive significant interest in community and grid-scale energy storage solutions next year, particularly in Japan, China and South Korea.
With a big splash on Sunday, Bill Gates unfurled a new investment fund for clean energy projects along with a who’s who of tech CEOs. Absent from the list was anyone from Google (or its parent, Alphabet).But that’s no sign it’s slouching on the matter, Google will have you know. On Thursday morning, the search giant announced its largest ever purchase of renewable energy to power its massive data centers. Google claims it’s the biggest such purchase from a non-utility company to date.
The intermittent nature of renewable energy sources is a huge burden on the power grid, making flexible and economical energy storage an essential step to a greener future. Researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) and the University of Florida have now devised a way to conveniently store and release energy harvested through concentrated solar power (CSP) plants, improving on the cost and energy density of previous systems and preparing this technology for the smart grid.While standard solar panels convert sunlight directly into electricity, concentrated solar power plants focus an array of mirrors onto a solar receiver and use the resulting heat to drive an electricity-generating steam turbine. These systems tend to be low-cost, safe, long lasting and highly efficient, but they must be coupled to powerful and flexible energy storage to work at full effect.
Utility-scale energy storage is poised for prodigious growth over the next decade, according to the market research firm Frost & Sullivan. “Overall, attractive pricing, combined with a surge in manufacturing and supportive policies for renewable energy development, will increase the bankability of renewable energy associated storage projects,” said Ross Bruton, an analyst at Frost & Sullivan.