Griffith Hack Clean & Sustainable Technologies

Ultra-efficient reverse osmosis drives peace
December 9, 2009, 9:03 am
Filed under: Articles | Tags: , , ,

I came across this interesting article in “The Chemical Engineer” on two water desalination pilot plants being planned  in Jordan and Israel, with the unlikely assistance of NATO.

Rob Wulff


Deal struck on renewable energy
August 24, 2009, 8:42 am
Filed under: Feature

 August 19, 2009 – 3:11PM

Australia is in for a huge boost in renewable energy after the federal government and the opposition agreed to a deal.

The deal, agreed today, will see the government’s bill to have 20 per cent of electricity come from renewable sources by 2020 pass the Senate.

“The opposition’s key concerns have been met by the government,” Opposition climate change spokesman Greg Hunt told reporters in Canberra.

“We are delighted that Australia is set to have renewable energy legislation, and the coalition will support the renewable energy target of 20 per cent for Australia.”

Opposition emissions trading spokesman Andrew Robb said there was now “100 per cent bipartisan support” for the bill.

“The position we got to with the government has had the unanimous support of the coalition party room, which is a great result,” he told reporters.

The Senate is due to continue debating the Renewable Energy Target (RET) bill this afternoon and a vote is expected by tomorrow.

The Senate last week voted down the proposed emissions trading scheme, which is separate to the RET. The RET will work by forcing electricity companies to buy a certain portion of electricity from renewable sources such as wind, solar and geothermal. Households and businesses will pay for it through higher power prices.

The coalition has secured more exemptions for industry from the cost of the RET in the deal struck on Wednesday. That means households will pay a greater share.
Mr Hunt said heavy-polluting, trade-exposed companies would be exempt from paying either 60 per cent or 90 per cent of the cost of the RET. That’s more of a free ride than the government originally offered.

Food processing industries would be able to ask for compensation too, Mr Hunt said.
He said the only opposition demand that had not been accepted was setting aside a portion of the RET permits for new technologies such as geothermal power.

Before today’s deal, the government had already bowed to some coalition demands, agreeing to treat coal gas as “renewable”, and separating the RET from the failed ETS.

Mr Hunt said the new deal was “a victory for common sense and a victory for the environment”. It was also a victory for Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull, he said.

“We’re willing to help get it through the Senate as quickly as possible,” Mr Hunt said.
The RET is due to start on January 1 and was a key election promise for Labor.

It will mean a proliferation of wind farms, and a new rebate for rooftop solar panels.