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Features: Australasia

15 January 2014

Why 2014 is a good time to be in the lighting control businessp

Network based lighting controls have failed to gain much traction over the last 5 years despite the benefits that they can deliver for improving operating costs and reducing CO2 emissions. So why will the influx of LED lighting into the commercial building market open up new opportunities for controls?

22 August 2013

Food production under spotlight as yield rates slowp

While rising grain yields have replaced area expansion as the principal source of growth in world production, the pace has slowed during the last two decades with fears that more countries are facing issues over sustainable food production.

25 July 2013

World Bank scales up energy efficiency, renewables investment in emerging regionsp

The World Bank Group is to expand access to energy, along with accelerating its efforts in energy efficiency and renewable energy.

2 July 2013

Adding intelligence to occupancy detectionp

It's a gnawing frustration of modern office life. You're sitting quietly — too quietly — in an office or carrel, and suddenly the lights go off. Grrr! Installed to save energy, the room's occupancy detector has determined that no one is around, so it signals the lights to turn off. For 30 years, occupancy sensors have relied primarily on motion detection. But now there's something new, writes the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Bill Scanlon.

17 June 2013

Crossing the climate linep

Earlier this month, a remote monitoring system in Hawaii recorded the first time in human history that the daily average for carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere hit over 400 parts per million (ppm). Crossing the 400ppm line is not inherently meaningful, other than reminding us that we are on a path to a place we don’t want to go.

2 May 2013

Marine energy is too clean to be ignoredp

Anders Jansson, CEO of Minesto, shares his views on why marine energy is ‘the best of the best’ and says new technology that can harvest energy from low velocity ocean and tidal currents can multiply the sector’s potential.

25 April 2013

Smart grid market outperforms in 2012 but sustainability looks fragilep

World smart grid sales climbed to $36.5bn in 2012 a growth of 30 per cent on 2011 and M&A activity reached $19.5bn almost doubling the value of deals in the previous year, according to memoori’s latest report. This confirms that solid progress has been made in the last three years but other findings show that all is not well.

1 March 2013

Smart grid thrives in 2012, but framework still not therep

World smart grid sales at installed prices climbed to $36.5bn in 2012 a growth of 30 per cent on 2011 and M&A activity reached $19.5bn almost doubling the value of deals in the previous year, according to the latest report from sector specialist Memoori.

20 February 2013

Making the right communications choice for smart meter technologyp

As the roll-out of smart meters takes place across Europe, governments have to make a decision on the primary communication technologies that will be used to connect the meters to utility companies. The choice of infrastructure will have significant short and long-term effects on the cost, efficiency and carbon footprint of the smart grid and its ability to deliver enhanced customer value. Nick Kamen, head of energy and utilities sector, with Vodafone, discusses the options being considered to facilitate smart meter connectivity.

11 January 2013

Smart grid drives further integration across connected real estatep

2012 was a seminal year for three industries that share some fast moving technologies and vertical markets, Electronic Security, Energy Management and the emerging Smart Grid, writes Allan McHale, author of smart grid blog Memoori.

4 January 2013

Out-the-box thinking pushes solar efficienciesp

It takes outside-the-box thinking to outsmart the solar spectrum and set a world record for solar cell efficiency. The solar spectrum has boundaries and immutable rules. No matter how much solar cell manufacturers want to bend those rules, they can't. Bill Scanlon from US National Renewable Energy Laboratory asks, how can we make a solar cell that has a higher efficiency than the rules allow?

17 December 2012

Can data slow down climate change?p

Development needs data: water security, oceans governance and food security need data, information, knowledge, networks and imagination to shift power in the public interest, according to James Cameron, chairman of Climate Change Capital, who shares his perspective on climate change.

26 November 2012

Green vs grey infrastructurep

Climate chaos, natural resource scarcity, demographic changes and macro economic burdens are challenging governments, especially urban areas, to deal with massive infrastructure issues, writes Ben Goldsmith, partner at WHEB Partners.

6 November 2012

Innovation is key in food and agricultural investingp

Investing in agriculture is about funding the innovation required to meet soaring demand for food, says Jürgen Siemer, senior analyst at SAM Group.

28 September 2012

Sustainability and greed: Unlikely bedfellowsp

‘Greed’, said Gordon Gekko, the villainous investment banker played by Michael Douglas in the 1987 film Wall Street, ‘is good’. He went on: ‘it clarifies, cuts through and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit.’ With companies that actively work to reduce their environmental impact making more money, it seems sustainability and greed go hand-in-hand, writes Andrew Ure, managing director of OgilvyEarth.

6 September 2012

The Green Climate Fund and private finance: Instruments to mobilise investmentp

In order to tackle climate change, governments will need to leverage a share of the $117tr of assets managed by private investors. However, various barriers and risks have prevented private sector capital for climate change mitigation projects to flow at the scale required, writes Steven Gray, head of UN and international policy, carbon finance, and Nicholas Tatrallyay, senior analyst at Climate Change Capital.

7 August 2012

The carbon price in Australia – What does it all mean?p

Australia’s Clean Energy Bill and Carbon Tax have been controversial, but measures are in place to avoid predicted job losses, says sustainable recruitment consultancy Allen & York.

13 July 2012

Closed data will be the death of smart metersp

In early June, the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) published the results of smart-meter field trials, concluding that ‘in some cases there was little effect on home comfort, as actions focused on unnecessary consumption, while in others the effect was noticeable – for example, a colder and darker home’. This reveals a stark truth: smart meters do not, in themselves, provide a value proposition to consumers, writes Ian Rose, professional services director at PassivSystems.

4 July 2012

Project finance needed to fund offshore wind power demandsp

Offshore wind is a source of great potential for investment over the next ten years. Many countries expect wind power to account for a large share of their renewable-energy investment to meet energy and climate goals - but offshore wind technology is not cheap. Terry Pratt and Jose Abos, credit analysts at Standard & Poor's, discuss the challenges of financing offshore wind projects across Europe.

26 June 2012

Capital market involvement holds key for clean energy financingp

The issuance of ‘green bonds’ may pave the way for increased private investment, but investors must be made aware of exactly what the risks are, says ratings agency Standard & Poor’s on its return from the Rio+20 Summit.

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