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3 posts from March 2012

Friday, 16 March 2012

Biomass – Energetic Goo or Environmental Mess?

Biomass – What Is It?

The answer to that is complex. If we are talking about solar or hydro in an energy context the meaning will be clear. Sun or water are the resource and the result is power. While biomass can easily be described as raw material of plant, animal or human origin, this covers a wide range of individual substances and sources. The leafs you gather in your garden and throw on the compost heap fall under it, but so do energy crops and sewage sludge, basically anything organic that can be burnt directly or converted into something that is a fuel.

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Thursday, 08 March 2012

Hybrid Cars 2012 – What’s The Story?

Decorated But Not Appreciated?

There are as many prize-givings as stars in the sky. They range from the bombastic Annual Academy Awards, also known as The Oscars, to the Employee of the Year at a small company in a remote backwater. One example amongst them that is recognised as a true accolade in many countries is the Car of the Year award. Since its inception in 1963 on the initiative of Dutch motor journalist Fred van der Vlugt it has graced many an iconic vehicle from Rover 2000 (1964), via Citroen CX (1975), to Fiat Uno (1984). How happily petrol-swilling the Swinging Sixties were was demonstrated by delectable offerings such as Rolls Royce Silver Shadow, Oldsmobile Toronado or Jensen FF occupying places in the top three.

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Friday, 02 March 2012

Feed-in-Tariff – an Update

The Budget That Wasn’t One

Britain and a number of other countries, for example Germany and Italy, introduced incentives to encourage small-scale generation of electricity from renewable sources. The target were private individuals, small businesses and community organisations, such as schools, because they were deemed to be the perfect platform for spreading clean energy rather than relying on large utility companies alone.

That was, and is, not only laudable but ingenious. Many people are keen to take part in the development of a future with lower emissions given the chance. Of course, in the main that ‘chance’ means money. It was, therefore, not enough for governments to come up with audacious plans. They had to back them up with funding as well. Cue the Feed-in-Tariff scheme (FiTs).

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