FROM THE EDITOR
Renewable Energy Makes a Mighty Wind in Europe
Europe continues to lead the way toward a renewable energy future. The latest report from the EC’s Joint Research Centre finds that wind energy provided the Continent with eight percent of its electricity in 2014. Further, the report projects rapid growth; by 2020, wind energy will account for 12 percent of all Euro electricity. Also noted: top user Denmark recorded 40 percent of its electricity generation as sourced from wind power. Five other countries—Germany, Romania, Portugal, Ireland, and Spain—also generated significant wind energy shares. The wind energy numbers support progress toward the EU’s “20-20-20” climate and energy targets for 2020. Yes, Europe has an energy strategy, an overall policy that is missing in action in the U.S.
John Howell, Editorial Director
News & Blogs
(3BL Media/Justmeans) – In recent years, large farming companies such as Monsanto, DuPont and Deere and Company have increasingly invested in innovative technologies and even acquired startups dedicated to improving the sustainability of global food production. Between 2013 and 2014, the interest of Silicon Valley investors such as Kleiner Perkins, DBL Investors and Google Ventures in backing innovative agro-based startups also doubled in terms of deal size, according to the Cleantech Group.
(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Investments that have a social or environmental benefit have grown substantially in the last few years. A recent report from the Washington-based Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment said that socially responsible investment assets in the U.S. stood at $7 trillion in 2014, registering an increase of 76 percent over 2012. A significant portion of these investments are aimed at helping developing countries.
(3BL Media and Just Means) - Seven days, seven marathons. The Run Across Congo has created huge awareness for gender equality in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Women runners from around the U.S. gathered together along the shores of Lake Kivu to partner with and encourage female farmers.
(3BL Media/Just Means) - John Dewar & Sons’ Aberfeldy Distillery in Scotland has found in biomass a great ally to reduce its carbon footprint and fight climate change. The switch to this type of renewable energy enabled the company to achieve an emissions reduction of 90 percent last year. The company employs 300 people at seven locations throughout Scotland.
(3BL Media/Justmeans) - Back in April, James Hansen described some newly discovered causes for concern about global warming impacts including the rapid disintegration of Antarctic ice sheets, and an ocean circulation pattern around the poles. Now, after further analysis, he and a team of 16 other scientists have issued a draft of a new report that ratchets up the level of concern and the need for urgent action. (It should be noted that the report has not yet been peer-reviewed.)
3BL Media/Justmeans) – Amidst the news about China's stock market which has been of a roller-coaster ride this year, the MetLife Foundation has announced a three-year, $1.8 million partnership with Opportunity International to promote knowledge and access to financial services in rural China.