Archive for the ‘#Germany’ Tag

Last Chance to See: a Euro-graphy of France | Strange Maps | Big Think   Leave a comment

An interesting view and commentary on the Euro-crisis. Premise is that a monitary union without a political union is a critical and  flawed  governance model and that the tension seen now strains around that concept. Well worth the full read….

“Maastricht’s creation of a monetary union without a political one is now seen as a fundamental flaw of the euro project. A consequent, and almost equally common view is that Mediterranean countries then took advantage of the stability provided by the euro to engage in gross fiscal irresponsibility. But Soros decried the euro’s political deficit as a ‘Third-World’ burden on countries on the eurozone’s economic periphery: heavily indebted, in a currency they can’t control (i.e. devaluate).

The ‘centre’ (read: Germany) deserves quite a bit of blame, Soros said, for “designing a flawed system, enacting flawed treaties, pursuing flawed policies and always doing too little too late”, continuing that “[i]n the 1980’s Latin America suffered a lost decade; a similar fate now awaits Europe.”

Indeed, one of the remarkable constants in Europe’s reaction to the unfolding crisis, at crisis summit after crisis summit,  is to do just enough to avert disaster, but nowhere near enough to fix the fundamental flaws of the system. Mainly, snorts Soros, because they don’t understand the system’s flaws. Or is there a hidden agenda? If Germany does just enough to save the euro, but not correct its inherent imbalance, then the European Union will become, in the words of George Soros, “a German empire with the periphery as the hinterland.”

Between total collapse and a German-dominated collection of economically subservient states, Soros sees a third option. He foresees that European autorities (i.e. the German government and the Bundesbank) have a “three months’ window” to correct mistakes and reverse the trend towards disintegration.

But this will require a much larger commitment from the European summit at the end of June than the ‘temporary relief’ offered by previous ones. After the window closes, the gap between market demands and the eurozone’s options will become unbridgeable. The subsequent breakup of the euro could chain-react and cause “a collapse of the Schengen Treaty, the common market, and the European Union itself.”

All of which is both terrible and important, but what – I hear you think [1] – does this have to do with maps? ”

via 568 – Last Chance to See: a Euro-graphy of France | Strange Maps | Big Think.

All eyes on German renewable energy efforts   Leave a comment

This tiny village in a wind-swept corner of eastern Germany seems an unlikely place for a revolution.

Yet environmentalists, experts and politicians from El Salvador to Japan to South Africa have flocked here in the past year to learn how Feldheim, with just 145 people, is already putting into practice Germany’s vision of a future powered entirely by renewable energy.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government passed legislation in June setting the country on course to generate a third of its power through renewable sources — such as wind, solar, geothermal and bioenergy — within a decade, reaching 80 percent by 2050, while creating jobs, increasing energy security and reducing harmful emissions.

The goals are among the world’s most ambitious, and expensive, and other industrialized nations from the U.S. to Japan are watching to see whether transforming into a nation powered by renewable energy sources can really work.

“Germany can’t afford to fail, because the whole world is looking at the German model and asking, can Germany move us to new business models, new infrastructure?” said Jeremy Rifkin, a U.S. economist who has advised the European Union and Merkel.

In June, the nation passed the 20 percent mark for drawing electric power from a mix of wind, solar and other renewables. That compares with about 9 percent in the United States or Japan — both of which rely heavily on hydroelectric power, a source that has long been used.”……

In the grand scheme of environmental initiatives, a successful outcome of  Germany in the renewable energy sector is vital to silence the critics , naysayers and frankly , the less bold and decisive leaders to prove that change in the energy sector is sustainably possible. 

No one should wait, however, to see the full outcome….the self imposed decision by Germany to phase out energy sourced from the nuclear sector has put it onto the juggernaut for more green. Their research , technology development and maufacturing will put it into the lead to export more of their expertise in this sector.

Do read the full article.

via All eyes on German renewable energy efforts.

Posted December 31, 2011 by arnoneumann in Germany, Renewables

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Germany Dims Nuclear Plants, but Hopes to Keep Lights On – NYTimes.com   1 comment

Implications of the decision by Germany to shut down its nuclear energy reactors in the light of the nuclear disaster in Fukashima Japan .

“With a total of 133 gigawatts of installed generating capacity in place at the start of this year, “there was really a huge amount of space to shut off nuclear plants,” Harry Lehmann, a director general of the German Federal Environment Agency and one of Germany’s leading policy makers on energy and environment, said of the road map he helped develop. The country needs about 90.5 gigawatts of generating capacity on hand to fill a typical national demand of about 80 gigawatts a day. So the 25 gigawatts that nuclear power contributed would not be missed — at least within its borders.

To be prudent, the plan calls for the creation of 23 gigawatts of gas- and coal-powered plants by 2020. Why? Because renewable plants don’t produce nearly to capacity if the air is calm or the sky is cloudy, and there is currently limited capacity to store or transport electricity, energy experts say.”

via Germany Dims Nuclear Plants, but Hopes to Keep Lights On – NYTimes.com.

In Europe, the Great Energy Debate — Renewables or Nuclear — Begins : Greentech Media   Leave a comment

 

 

Europe looks like it will become a live laboratory for the some of the biggest questions facing the energy world.

via In Europe, the Great Energy Debate — Renewables or Nuclear — Begins : Greentech Media.

Posted June 6, 2011 by arnoneumann in Energy, Environment, Europe

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Germany to close all nuclear plants by 2022   Leave a comment

The politics of energy  in Germany  or , should one say , energy has entered politics and the two are heavily entwined. Just reflect on your own jurisdiction and probably you too can note where there are issues of impact by energy production on the environment or other philosophical areas of society.

Germany to close all nuclear plants by 2022.

“Nuclear policy is heavily disputed in Germany and the issue has helped boost the Greens, which captured control of one of the CDU’s stronghold states, Baden-Wuerttemberg, in an election in March.

Merkel’s majority in the Bundesrat upper house vanished last year after the CDU failed to hold onto North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state. Losing Baden-Wuerttemberg, a vote held after Fukushima and fought in part over energy issues, dealt another blow to Merkel’s authority.”

Read more: http://www.theprovince.com/news/Germany+close+nuclear+plants+2022/4858940/story.html#ixzz1NrMLO8hx

Posted May 30, 2011 by arnoneumann in Energy

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