Rhein on Energy and Climate

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50 days ahead of the Copenhagen Climate Conference a new theme re-enters the debate between developed and developing countries: free transfer of green energy technologies to developing countries. India and China are particularly vociferous in demanding such technologies to be made accessible to their companies free of license fees, citing the example of anti-retroviral drugs… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

China and India have signed a five-year agreement for strengthening their cooperation on energy conservation and efficiency and also taking the lead of developing countries in the run-up to Copenhagen. This is excellent news. Developing countries should put their hand together in Copenhagen for obtaining maximum concessions from developed countries for both emission cuts and… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

At their last preparatory meeting for the Copenhagen Climate Conference the EU environment ministers, October 20-21, have agreed to offer a 95 percent reduction of their green house gas emissions until 2050. This is praiseworthy; but it remains void of meaning unless the EU comes up with answers on three critical questions: What concrete steps… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

Politicians have little time to think and therefore often come up with bizarre ideas. One of these is the carbon border tax proposed by President Sarkozy and favoured also by other politicians in Europe. A carbon border tax is an instrument for protecting European industries against imports of carbon-intensive products like cement, steel, aluminium or… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

The European Commission has given green light to making available € 1 billion for funding six “clean” power stations trying different technologies for capturing and underground storing of C02 emissions (CCS) across Europe. It is to be hoped that the European Parliament will rapidly approve the funding proposal despite objections from green NG0s. In order… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

For the first time in its 50 year history the majority of EU member states is confronted with the risk of an unsustainable debt burden. Most member states have the “constitutional debt limits” imposed by the Maastricht treaty almost 20 years ago, according to which member states must restrain their annual budget deficits to a… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

Like most oil and gas producing countries Iran has been spoiling its citizens by ridiculously low prices for gasoline, fuel, gas and electricity, at a hefty charge for the national budget. The subsidies, including those for food, telephone and transport services, cost the government almost € 70 billion annually. Read also: Sanctions Are A Toothless… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

Siemens, one of the global giants in power equipment, wants to become the major manufacturer of solar thermal power plants. To this end, it will acquire the Israeli company Solel, which has pioneered that technology during the past two decades. Solar thermal power technology concentrates the sunlight by sophisticated mirror systems and produces steam up… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

Iran shows increasing signs of its determination to develop a military nuclear capacity and to become the leading power in the Middle East. This is no rejoicing prospect for any country on earth, big or small, distant or close. It is bound to make the Middle East an even more instable region, challenging Israel’s military… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

The Final Declaration approved at the G20 meeting in Pittsburgh proposes a framework for “strong, sustainable and balanced growth” as the basic paradigm for the 21st century. But in the long term, global economic growth cannot be sustainable. It is bound to run into increasing ecological constraints. A system is sustainable as long as it… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein