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Renewable energy sources

In Germany the share of energy from wind and solar power stations for the first time went beyond 20% of the country’s energy balance. While Germany’s plan to go nuclear free is frowned upon by some, many experts are sure that dropping the nuke is the way to go. Environmental NGOs say that Germany may serve as a good example for Russia, since the goal of 4.5% by 2020 is close to nothing.

Russia aims to more than quadruple renewable power generation by 2020 and has formidable resources to do so, but its hydrocarbon lobby is stonewalling progress and is unlikely to back down in the foreseeable future. On the contrary, representatives of environmental NGOs consider the target of 4,5% as impermissibly low one. Green energy experts say Russia's expansive coastline, forest cover, favourable topography and abundance of wastes that can be recycled should mean that meeting this goal would not be a problem. Russia can become a world leader in renewables and strive to 20% share of renewables in its energy production.

Energy saving is the resource as big as Russia, according to Scientific director of the Ural Institute for Energy Saving Nikolai Danilov (Ekaterinburg). This entirely reflects the views of environmental NGOs, who believe that the purposeful introduction of energy efficiency projects will allow to abandon construction of hazardous energy projects.

Tomsk region has a plans to electrify more than 20 settlements to 2020 with wind-solar decentralized energy sources. It will cost 91,9 mln rub which will be paid back in 3-4 years. Heads of the region's districts have shown interest in the developments by Tomsk's scientists, and region's authorities are now holding consultations concerning providing the financing of the pilot project.

April 6 to 8, 2011 a media tour was held in Murmansk region in order to introduce journalists and NGO activists to local examples of low-carbon solutions, among them: the energy efficient block in the town of Apatity, a wind power turbine in Murmansk and the use of geothermal heat pumps for buildings. The tour concluded with a press conference in the Murmansk press center of Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper where the tour’s organizers – Olga Senova of RSEU Climate Secretariat and Friends of the Baltic NGO, Elena Kruglikova of Kola Environmental Center and Vitaly Servetnik of Nature and Youth held their speeches.

For the first time in Russia in Belgorod oblast the solar PV power station was put into operation to sell electricity to the grid. The system consists of polycrystalline solar cells of 50 kW and amorphous solar panels of the same capacity. Design capacity - 133,390 kWh per year.

A while ago REN21 published a report presenting the latest data on current trends in the renewable energy sector. Despite the significant growth of RE production worldwide Russia still lags behind showing some of the lowest figures on the list. Having a huge RE development potential at hand, the country lacks support and development mechanisms for the sector and prioritizes fossils exploitation.

On July 12 in Kaliningrad, the Russian Socio-Ecological Union and Friends of the Baltic NGO held a seminar for journalists and the public "Energy efficiency against climate change" within the international bicycle campaign "Sea-Nature-Energy", visited the oil platform D6, discussed energy-efficient solutions for the residential sector and education for schoolchildren on energy saving.

During his visit to Norway and Denmark in the end of April 2010, President Medvedev said about interest to apply in Russia Nordic experience in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency. "Energy efficiency, unfortunately, is not the best side of Russian economy today " he said at the press conference. Russian president signed with his Danish counterpart the agreements on implementation of projects related to climate change, and projects on energy efficiency

In the St.Petersburg & Leningrad region a media tour “Climate and Green Energy” was held 8 of April. Climate Secretariat of the Russian Socio-Ecological Union shows successful cases of energy efficiency and alternative energy.

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