Global matters: 8 smart grid and renewables updates


From Turkey's smart grid spending plans (and what they could mean for U.S. companies) to tumbling renewable prices in Australia (and what they could mean for coal plants) we've got a quick look at some interesting new developments near and far. Scroll down and onto page 2 for details.


Turkey will spend $5 billion on smart grids by 2015, according to a Bloomberg article. Quoting the U.S. consulate in Istanbul, the article suggests there will be "substantial opportunities" for North American energy and smart grid technology companies to establish closer relations with the Turkish government. "If the utilities want to take advantage of this, the accurate metering and billing that smart grids can provide will be vital," said Chris Rogers, a utilities analyst for Bloomberg Industries in London. "As Turkey becomes richer, more air- conditioning, solar power and electric vehicles will be bought, which also need smart grids to function properly." Read more >>


Tumbling renewable energy prices in Australia could make dirty coal extinct, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald, which also notes that in parts of Australia electricity demand is at eight and 10-year lows. ‘‘Nobody in their right mind would be building coal-fired power plants now,’’ said Mike Sandiford, director of the Melbourne Energy Institute. Read more >>


Norway and Sweden will see a boost in wind power installations because costs for developers are lower than other European countries, according to a Bloomberg report. Germany's largest utility, for example, has proposals for nine onshore farms in Norway totaling 1,500 MW and off-shore wind power developer EON wants to site one of the world's largest sea-based wind farms off Sweden. Read more >>


A BBC feature on life-changing megatrends labels "smart" the new green. "Smart initiatives," the report says, "are set to emerge throughout modern society, reshaping the way we interact with homes and cities, buildings and cars, as well as with factories and utility companies." Read more >>


France achieves big gains in solar. Clean Technica reports that solar power generation was up 67% in France last year as the country looks to solar to wean itself from nuclear fuel dependency. Read more >>


And in Spain the big story is wind. NPR reports that for the first time, electricity production from Spain's wind mills topped that of nuclear, coal and solar. Read more >>


5 more from SGN's Global channel...

Smart grid market will nearly double by 2018, with main growth in China

Next big smart grid growth opportunity: Think smart cities (and think Asia)

EVs done right (finally). Germany leads the way

Why Eskom invests heavily in South African rural electrification

It's game on for Japan's smart grid - and Itron jumps in


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