Germany will be reducing its wind energy footprint this year in order to artificially reduce the total energy generated. Germany is a leader in renewable energy production and this move could hamper its reputation, feel some experts. Since the shutting down or reduction in usage of nuclear power plants, wind energy has taken its place but is now producing so much energy, that it is creating imbalances. While the southern part of the country is in greater need of energy, no sustainable method has been devised for the successful transportation of the same. Residents have opposed large grids, and the underground line-laying is running late from the initial dates understood. By the year 2030, around half of Germany’s total energy needs will be met by renewable sources.

A study concluded by the Sierra Club has confirmed a list of three cities that have already become exclusive users of renewable energy and seven more that are on the verge of achieving their targets over the next two decades. The tiny town of Greensburg in Kansas was the first to achieve this. The next two were Burlington in Vermont and Aspen in Colorado. Among those that are yet to but will soon fulfill their targets, on top is Georgetown in Texas. East Hampton in the state of New York will achieve the same by the year 2020. That year will also add Grand Rapids in Michigan to the list. Completing off the tentative list are San Jose, San Diego and San Francisco in California and Rochester in Minnesota.


The Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec have outlined plans for reducing vehicle emissions to almost negligible levels. Among the slew of incentives provided by the state of Ontario, the exemption of sales tax from electricity plug-ins for next two years is the one that will probably have the greatest mid-term impact. Also there are plans to allow free recharging of electric vehicles at public facilities for up to four years. The idea is that if plug-ins are built eventually the market demand for electric and hybrid vehicles will develop. Ontario on the other hand eliminated coal completely in the year 2014 and runs most of its electricity from hydro or nuclear origins. While Toyota has a presence in Ontario, it is clearly entrenched in the automobile giant’s corporate strategy for the state to use clean technology in all manufacturing processes.


Ford and Nissan are two of the global giants who are working towards fulfilling their clean tech goals. Expansion in hybrid and electric car technologies were recently announced by both of them at the EV Symposium and Exhibition held in Montreal. Their approaches though are quite different to one another. Ford believes in the approach of giving the end users multiple options. Thus they are going for hybrid car models with electricity plug in options. This they feel will also be more economically viable in the medium term. Nissan on the other hand has gone all out exploring the business innovation of experimenting with exclusive electric cars. They believe that they can leverage existing technologies to and scale them in such a way that it makes business sense.


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