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Portal:Renewable energy

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Introduction

Burbo Bank Offshore Wind Farm, at the entrance to the River Mersey in North West England.

Renewable energy is generally defined as energy that comes from resources which are naturally replenished on a human timescale such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves and geothermal heat. Renewable energy replaces conventional fuels in four distinct areas: electricity generation, hot water/space heating, motor fuels, and rural (off-grid) energy services.

Based on REN21's 2014 report, renewables contributed 19 percent to our energy consumption and 22 percent to our electricity generation in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Modern renewables (such as hydro, wind, solar and biofuels) and traditional biomass contributed in about equal parts to the global energy supply. Worldwide investments in renewable technologies amounted to more than US$ 214 billion in 2013, with countries like China and the United States heavily investing in wind, hydro, solar and biofuels.

Renewable energy resources exist over wide geographical areas, in contrast to other energy sources, which are concentrated in a limited number of countries. Rapid deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency is resulting in significant energy security, climate change mitigation, and economic benefits. In international public opinion surveys there is strong support for promoting renewable sources such as solar power and wind power. At the national level, at least 30 nations around the world already have renewable energy contributing more than 20 percent of energy supply. National renewable energy markets are projected to continue to grow strongly in the coming decade and beyond.

While many renewable energy projects are large-scale, renewable technologies are also suited to rural and remote areas and developing countries, where energy is often crucial in human development. United Nations' Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said that renewable energy has the ability to lift the poorest nations to new levels of prosperity.

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Selected article

The world's largest solar energy dish is located at the Ben-Gurion National Solar Energy Center

Solar power in Israel and the Israeli solar energy industry has a history that dates to the founding of the country. In the 1950s, Levi Yissar developed a solar water heater to help assuage an energy shortage in the new country. By 1967 around one in twenty households heated its water with the sun and 50,000 solar heaters had been sold. With the 1970s oil crisis, Harry Zvi Tabor, the father of Israel's solar industry, developed the prototype of the solar water heater now used in over 90% of Israeli homes. Israeli engineers are at the cutting edge of solar energy technology and its solar companies work on projects around the world.

Israeli innovation and research has advanced solar technology to a degree that it is almost cost-competitive with fossil fuels. Its abundant sun made the country a natural location for the promising technology. The high annual incident solar irradiance in the Negev Desert has spurred an internationally renowned solar research and development industry, with Harry Tabor and David Faiman of the National Solar Energy Center two of its more prominent members. At the end of 2008 a feed-in tariff scheme was approved, which immediately put in motion the building of many residential and commercial solar energy power station projects.

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Selected biography

Denis hayes 1980.jpg

Denis Hayes (1944– ) is an environmental activist and proponent of solar power. He rose to prominence in 1970 as the coordinator for the first Earth Day. Hayes founded the Earth Day Network and expanded it to more than 180 nations. During the Carter Administration, Hayes became head of the Solar Energy Research Institute (now known as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory), but left this position when the Reagan administration cut funding for the program. Since 1992, Hayes has been president of the Bullitt Foundation in Washington.

Hayes has received the national Jefferson Awards Medal for Outstanding Public Service as well as the highest awards bestowed by the Sierra Club, The Humane Society of the United States, the National Wildlife Federation, the Natural Resources Council of America, the Global Environmental Facility of the World Bank, the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, and the American Solar Energy Society. Time magazine named him as “Hero of the Planet” in 1999.

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Did you know?

... that because solar cookers use no fuel and they cost nothing to run, humanitarian organizations are promoting their use worldwide to help slow deforestation and desertification, caused by using wood as fuel for cooking ? Solar Cookers are a form of outdoor cooking and are often used in situations where minimal fuel consumption is important, or the danger of accidental fires is high.

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WikiProjects

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News

  • May 19, 2016: Final turbine of the 582MW German offshore Gode Wind Farm installed. (ReCharge)
  • May 18, 2016: Renewable energy in Portugal supplies 100% of demand over four days in a row. (The Guardian)
  • April 29, 2016: The Australian Capital Territory lifts its renewable energy target to 100% by 2020. (The Canberra Times)
  • March 15, 2016: Bokpoort concentrated solar power inaugurated in South Africa. (ESI Africa)
  • March 5, 2016: The 132MW Cadiz Solar Power Plant in the Philippines, the largest in Southeast Asia opens. (Deal Street Asia)
  • February 5, 2016: Morocco completes the Noor 1 solar plant, the first stage of a 500MW project (The Japan Times)
  • December 17, 2015: The 113MW Tafila Wind Farm in Jordan is inaugurated. (PR Newswire)
  • December 2, 2015: The 300MW Cestas solar plant, the largest photovoltaic power station in Europe, is inaugurated near Bordeaux. (RenewEconomy)
  • December 1, 2015: The 200MW Gulf of El-Zayt wind farm - the largest in Africa- is inaugurated in Egypt. (African Review)
  • November 26, 2015: Mauritania's first wind farm inaugurated. (North Africa Post)
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