Rhein on Energy and Climate

Archives for

Solar electricity generated from PV panels and mirrors is due to become one of the leading sources of power generation in the 21st century. It is abundantly available and will become cheaper to produce than fossil or nuclear electricity, due to technological advances in thin-film solar cells and conversion rates of solar irradiation. EU researchers… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

For the last three months the Iberian Peninsula and South-Eastern Britain have suffered from the worst droughts for several decades, with hardly any rainfall, less than 20 mm in Spain and Portugal. This dramatic situation has hardly been noticed outside the countries directly affected: city dwellers are less and less sensitive to natural catastrophes that… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

With sun shine of > 2500 hours per year, North Africa and the Gulf countries are among the best insulated regions of the planet. They are also unequalled in radiation density (2500-3000 kWh/m2/year). Both factors combined make them ideal locations for generating solar electricity. Indeed, the 22 Arab countries, occupying one third of global desert… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

When politicians get bored or frustrated with the jobs for which they are appointed they often “invade” new fields for which they have no particular competence. This seems to be the case with Guido Westerwelle, the German foreign minister. At the informal meeting of EU foreign ministers in Copenhagen, March 10-12, he has proposed a… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

It is worthwhile taking a look at the perceived corruption levels in Europe, as measured by the Transparency International 2011 global scoreboard that ranks countries between 10 for the best and 0 for the worst performers. There is a visible correlation between countries that are EU members and those that are not, the former obtaining… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

The week of February 27th to March 3rd is likely to write history in the short annals of European diplomacy. For the first time, the EU has played tit for tat with Belarus, its annoying Eastern neighbour country that excels above all by its authoritarian, repressive regime. On February 28th the EU foreign ministers condemned… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein

As expected after the demonstration of power by major airline countries in Moscow February 28-29th China has not waited long before taking retaliatory action against the EU imposition of emission caps on Chinese carriers` flights to EU airports. Two multi-billion Chinese orders for Airbus planes are at stake. The Chinese government has blocked the authorisation… » read more

Posted by Eberhard Rhein