Tag Archives: Germany

What Obama Can Learn From German Solar Success And Failure

What Obama Can Learn From German Solar Success and Failure.

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In light of Barack Obama’s huge win and Democratic gains in the Senate, the future of American solar industry looks bright. In a campaign that only included whispers of green industry innovation, Obama’s acceptance speech included a mention of climate change.

The American media is also suddenly comfortable to acknowledge climate change thanks to superstorm Sandy. It seems that the national media cannot ignore a storm of this caliber flooding their own backyard.

So, where does the U.S. look to for an example of a successful solar industry? China has been very successful at flooding the solar panel market with the help of illegal subsidization practices, and, of course, cheap labor. This is not a viable option here, and China’s success has made it very difficult for American and German clean tech companies to get off the ground.

In a cold and cloudy country thousands of miles from the equator, Germany has launched the most successful solar panel industry in the West. With the help of years of subsidization, Germany has astonishingly become the world leader in solar energy production.

Berlin took off the training wheels earlier this year. Though results have been mixed and spun by conflicting interests, the panel industry is alive and well, and production is extremely high.

On May 25, Germany got one-third of all of its electricity from solar, for that day. While this was monumental, it was only the beginning of the good news. In the first nine months of 2012, solar power production is up 50% over the same period last year.

Astonishingly, the Germans are ambivalent over whether or not to phase out their “Feed-In Tariff” policy, wherein private citizens can actually make money with their solar power production by feeding it back into the power grid. This appears to be in response to the efforts of the great career contrarian Bjorn Lomborg.

Thanks to the German naysayers and Chinese market dominance, a wave of consolidation is sweeping across Germany’s “solar valley” in Bitterfeld. The solar panel industry is suffering. But a new manufacturing method, referred to as “oven technology,” is set to level the playing field by using fewer raw material.

The German solar industry is a model for those of us in sunnier climes. If they can have success in producing new records for solar power production every year, just imagine what the southern U.S could do. If the federal government follows California’s lead in funding innovation and subsidizing the still fledgling industry, we could abandon the damaging practices of fossil fuel extraction plaguing the countryside.

Instead of swapping one polluting industry (coal mining) for another (gas fracking) we could harness sustainable energy. We could simply take the $46 billion in fossil fuel subsidies that President Obama is promising to get rid of and put them into this domestic industry.

Image courtesy of Flickr, Pure3d

Source: Mashable.com

 

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Motorcycles, Bikes – Intermot, Cologne, Germany – Gallery


Source: N-tv.de

 

EURO 2012 – Group B Is “Group Of Death” – Nothing Unusual Happened So Far

With Denmark beating the Netherlands and Germany beating Portugal in the first round of group play, nothing unusual really happened in the group of death. Two games are played, and two results are in, that’s really all.

It was clear since the draw that everything can happen in this group. It is not really a surprise that Denmark won over the Dutch and Germany over Portugal. The way how the games went confirms what everyone has expected from the beginning: Everyone can beat everyone. You can analyze the two games to death, what came out are two facts, every game has a result, and luck. On this first day the lucky winners were Denmark and Germany. None of the winners indicated that they will clearly win the second group game and none of the losers clearly indicated that they will lose the second game as well. Just as predicted.

As the games clearly displayed, it might very well happen that on Wednesday night, after two game days, all four teams might sit on three points. Anyone willing to rule this out? Even with the results from game day one turned upside down, the same conclusion would be right. In this group, like in no other, everything is possible.

While in some of the other groups we will know after game two who will advance into the knock out stages, in this group, we will have to wait until the last game is played. Nothing new here as well. Let’s all sit back and enjoy the upcoming games. It is going to be exciting until the last minute of the last game.

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FIFA.com – Schumacher: We’re top for keepers

FIFA.com – Schumacher: We’re top for keepers.

Harald “Toni” Schuhmacher, one of the world’s best goalkeepers and German international for many years, explains why the Germans are top when it comes to goalkeepers.

Germany 3-0 Netherlands, friendly; Miroslav Klose shines – News | FOX Sports on MSN

Germany 3-0 Netherlands, friendly; Miroslav Klose shines – News | FOX Sports on MSN.

Germans walked over the Dutch. Miroslav Klose, Thomas Mueller and Mesut Oezil scored the goal in a one sided game.