Iran talks up plans for $3bn renewable energy push
07 February 2017 | Mitigation
These are some of the words that describe what’s been happening in the Arctic over the past year as surge after surge of warm air have stalled, and at times reversed, sea ice pack growth. And the unfortunate string of superlatives is set to continue this week.
Arctic sea ice is already sitting at a record low for this time of year and a powerful North Atlantic storm is expected to open the flood gates and send more warmth pouring into the region from the lower latitudes. By Thursday, it could reach up to 50°F above normal. In absolute temperature, that’s near the freezing point and could further spur a decline in sea ice.
Scientists have said the past year in the Arctic is “beyond even the extreme” as climate change remakes the region. Sea ice hit a record low maximum last winter (for the second year in a row, no less) and the second-lowest minimum ever recorded last fall. After a fairly rapid refreeze in late September, the region experienced a dramatic shift. Extraordinary warmth has been a recurring theme.
Local media reports plans are underway for 5GW renewable energy program
Iran has become the latest Middle Eastern country to announce ambitious plans to beef up its renewable energy capacity, outlining proposals to invest $3bn in delivering 5GW of new clean energy capacity.
Speaking at an event this weekend to mark the opening of two 7MW solar farms in the Hamedan province, Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian said the power plants would form part of a wave of new renewable energy investments.
"Iran intends to launch a large-scale project to construct renewable energy power plants over the sixth Five-Year Development Plan to generate five thousand megawatts of energy in the country," he was quoted as saying by local media.
He added that projects were already underway in Hamedan, with construction work started on three more large scale solar farms in the province.
The announcement is the latest in a series of moves from oil-rich Gulf states to step up investment in renewables and diversify their economies.
Only last month reports indicated Saudi Arabia was working on a $30bn to $50bn renewable energy investment program, as the country seeks to generate 30 per cent of its power from low carbon sources by 2030.
Source: Business Green