News from the REN21 Secretariat, Network and Upcoming Events
Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century
February 2012

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News from the REN21 Secretariat
News from the REN21 Network
Upcoming Events

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Dear reader,

elcome to the first 2012 edition of REN21’s newsletter. The year of the Dragon has started with strong news from the renewable energy sector:

On 16 January 2012, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon officially launched the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All during the Opening Ceremony of the World Future Energy Summit. Doubling the share of renewable energy by 2030 globally is one of the central objectives of his initiative to which REN21 is associated as partner. Reaching this objective is challenging but clearly feasible.
The latest figures on installed capacity underline the feasibility of reaching this objective: in 2011, the total wind power capacity was over 238 GW globally, representing an increase of 21 % from 2010. The wind industry has installed over 41 GW of new wind power, a 6% increase compared to 2010 additions and this despite the ongoing economic turmoil. The fact that nowadays more than 75 countries worldwide have commercial wind installations with 22 of them already passing the 1 GW level is particularly encouraging and shows that renewable energy has become an important part of the energy mix in both developed & developing countries.
Europe reports a new record of 71.3 % of new power capacity installations being renewables based in 2011 (32 GW out of a total of 45 GW new power capacity). With this, more renewable energy capacity was installed in Europe during 2011 than in any other year, an increase of 37.7 % compared to 2010. The clear champion among all renewable energy sources in terms of installed capacity in 2011 was PV with a newly installed capacity of 21 GW.
These encouraging developments are somehow clouded by recent policy changes such as in Spain where the Government has announced a temporary suspension of all renewable electricity incentives. This measure is creating quite some instability in the sector, showcasing the detrimental effect of stop-and-go policies and at the same time highlighting the future challenges of the renewable energy sector when it comes to system integration. 
The REN21 Global Futures Report, a first draft of which will be released at the beginning of March, will provide an overview of the range of thinking on the future of renewable energy, including system integration questions. The report aims at initiating dialogue among various stakeholders on the future of renewables and the key decisions and tradeoffs we face from the household to the global level.
At the moment, REN21 is fully engaged in preparations for the 2012 REN21 Global Status Report which will be launched at the beginning of June 2012 and which will provide you again with the most accurate overview of renewable energy policy, industry and market developments globally. We would be more than honored to welcome you as member of the illustrious community of REN21 Global Status Report contributors.
It is stated that the year of the dragon will be marked by excitement and intensity. May 2012 be a prosperous & exciting year for renewable energy, may the spirit of the dragon induce energy, vitality and unbridled enthusiasm for renewable energy!
Best wishes,
Christine Lins
Executive Secretary of REN21

News from the REN21 Secretariat

REN21 & IRENA seal their cooperation

REN21 and IRENA have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, thereby formalising their collaboration for the benefit of a rapid global deployment of renewable energy. In parallel, IRENA and REN21 have moved forward on kick-starting a joint project on building a qualitative and quantitative renewable energy database framework.
Often early renewable energy  developments and efforts in a country are not captured in existing energy statistics frameworks. Through this project, IRENA and REN21 aim to identify parameters and develop internationally consistent statistical indicators that might help national bodies and other stakeholders showcase their activities and progress in renewable energy. IRENA and REN21 will also provide regional and global platforms for countries to present this information, facilitating the scale up of investments and exchange of best practices in renewable energy.
The project will require an exhaustive review of all renewable data energy studies and datasets on the status of renewable energy developments and projections in order to understand the parameters used to showcase renewable energy advancements.  A series of workshops will be conducted (one in each of the three regions identified: Africa, Latin America and Caribbean and Asia-Pacific), thereby gathering primary input to the development of the renewable energy parameters that emerge regionally. |Read full press release...


REN21 Renewables Global Futures Report Consultations: facilitating dialogue on the future of renewables

As the new REN21 Renewables Global Futures Report took shape, two successful workshops were hosted by REN21 together with supporting partner organizations - TERI and REEEP as well as the World Future Council and the African Renewable Energy Alliance - to capture current perspectives on the range of possible renewable energy futures in India and Africa. The Global Futures Report, a sister to the Global Status Report, aims to provide an overview on how the future of renewable energy is currently seen by prominent experts, governments and organizations and to serve as a tool to facilitate dialogue on the future of RE.
Against the backdrop of the Moroccan Federation of Electricity, Electronics and Renewable Energies energy expo in Casablanca during November 2011, REN21 the World Future Council and the African Renewable Energy Alliance hosted a Global Status Report outreach event and a Global Futures Report Consultation Roundtable. The workshop brought together multi-stakeholders from North, South and Sub-Saharan Africa to discuss their perspectives on the future of renewable energy in Africa by 2030-2050.
In January 2012, REN21, TERI and REEEP held a Global Futures Report Consultation in New Delhi that brought together over 50 experts in India including the joint secretary of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, utilities, industry managers and CEOs, heads of industry associations, urban planners, nodal agencies, entrepreneurs, and others. The workshop was held on the sidelines of the Asian Roll-Out for the Year of Sustainable Energy for All and the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit in New Delhi, India.
The perspectives captured at the workshop complimented the 200 interviews conducted globally for the project and contributed to the first draft of the Global Futures Report which will be presented in Tokyo, Japan at the beginning of March. 

Give access to the REN21 Renewables Interactive Map from your website

The REN21 Renewables Interactive Map has just made available the possibility for other websites to incorporate its renewables country data search. By doing this we hope that more people seeking free renewable energy data will gain easy access to the MAP and its country profiles. 
For adding the map widget to your website, please visit the REN21 website and just copy paste the code onto your webpage:

REN21 Joins the Open Data Movement

The Linked Open Data is becoming increasingly important in the fields of state-of-the-art information and data management. It is already being used by many well-known organisations, products and services to create portals, platforms, internet-based services and applications.
For people in the energy field trying to come to grips with what Linked Open Data really means, there is an interesting new resource : the "Linked Open Data: The Essentials" booklet, which specifically targets decision-makers in energy-related organisations who want to understand what opening up their data sets will actually entail. The publication is available as a free download at
REN21, stimulated by its partnership with REEEP on the clean energy portal reegle, is currently strengthening its linked open data strategy with the objective of facilitating the use of REN21 data for services and applications to create new knowledge.
With the REN21 Renewables Global Status Report, produced as a collaborative effort of hundreds of experts in the field of renewable energy, REN21 creates knowledge, for which it is highly recognised. REN21 has developed the Renewables Interactive Map which furthers the perspectives provided in the GSR by enabling in depth country specific analysis allowing for in depth country specific analysis. Today, the objective of REN21 is to join the linked open data movement.
As a first step, REN21 attended the REEEP workshop “Linking Open Data to Accelerate Low-Carbon Development" in Abu Dhabi on 18 January 2012 which was attended by 20 major clean energy and development-related organisations. Also, REN21 is in the process of developing a Linked Open Data Strategy for its knowledge processes. 

Rural Energy Experts: Contribute your knowledge 

Rural Renewable Energy is an integral part of the REN21 Renewables Global Status Report (GSR) and thus a section is dedicated to capturing the advancements in the field of rural energy. In this edition of the Global Status Report, the rural renewable energy section will be authored by Ernesto Macias, President of the Alliance of Rural Electrification. In the rural energy field, the absence of substantial consolidated information poses a great challenge. In order to overcome this challenge and to improve the presentation of rural energy in the GSR, we seek your support to gather relevant information for the 2012 Global Status Report. Share your vision and experiences in this field along with data and information on the status of rural renewable energy and join the illustrious community of REN21 contributors. 
The success of the Global Status report and the Renewables Interactive Map is primarily due to the outstanding quality of input provided by the contributors’ network. If you would like to be part of the GSR network as contributing researcher or reviewer please contact us at

Data Research Internship with REN21

REN21 is seeking a highly motivated data research intern to support its Secretariat in Paris. The Intern will be expected to produce high value research data and analysis on renewable energy. We look for qualified individuals with a background in economics, statistics or any social science with a major focus on renewable energy / environmental studies. Deadline for application: 2 March 2012. See the REN21 website for the vacancy note providing further details.

News from the REN21 Network

International Year of Sustainable Energy for All launched
The 2012 International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, as declared by all UN Member States, was launched by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during the Opening Ceremony of the World Future Energy Summit 2012 in Abu Dhabi.
The Initiative focuses on three inter-linked objectives:
·  Ensure universal access to modern energy services.
·  Double the rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
·  Double the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.
These objectives are complementary. Progress in achieving one can help with progress toward the others.
REN21’s Executive Secretary Christine Lins gave the thematic presentation on renewable energy at the Asia-Roll out of the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All in Delhi on 1 February 2012 and participated in the European launch in Brussels on 8 February 2012.
Further information on the initiative:
New publication from the IEA: “Deploying Renewables”
The IEA’s new report, Deploying Renewables 2011: Best and Future Policy Practice:
·  Provides a comprehensive review and analysis of renewable energy policy and market trends
·  Analyses in detail the dynamics of deployment and provides best-practice policy principles for different stages of market maturity
·  Assesses the impact and cost-effectiveness of support policies using new methodological tools and indicators
·  Investigates the strategic reasons underpinning the pursuit of renewable energy deployment by different countries and the prospects for globalisation of renewable energy

Spanish Government announced a temporary suspension of all renewable electricity incentives
On 27 January 2012, the Spanish Government announced a temporary suspension of all incentives to new renewable electricity generation capacity.  The suspension will not affect already-operating plants or projects that have already been approved for receiving premiums by the Government (i.e. already registered in the so-called Pre-Allocation Registry). 
According to the Ministry of Industry, Energy & Tourism, the rationale behind the suspension is the weak overall budgetary position, a €24 billion electricity tariff deficit, and installed generation capacity over 50% greater than peak demand.  In this context it must be stated, however, that the electricity tariff deficit is constantly growing since 2000, when renewable energy in Spain hardly existed (even today the renewable energy feed-in tariff investments only represent 17% of this deficit). |Read more...

Global Solar and Wind Atlas Strategy published
In collaboration with the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) Multilateral Wind and Solar Working Group, IRENA has published a report titled "Implementation Strategy for a Global Solar and Wind Atlas"
The Strategy highlights the outcome of a collaboration to design a Global Solar and Wind Atlas as an open internet-based Geographic Information System (GIS), connecting major databases and information sources to map solar and wind energy sources globally. The Strategy highlights areas in which use of a global atlas on solar and wind would be important, including for policymaking, energy planning, market screening, and general awareness.
Download of the publication: Implementation Strategy for a Global Solar  and Wind Atlas

IRENA Working Paper Highlights Job Creation Potential of Biofuels and On-Grid Renewable Energy
IRENA has published a working paper titled “Renewable Energy Jobs: Status, Prospects & Policies,” which analyzes the potential for employment creation of grid-connected renewable energy generation and biofuels, calling for increased training and education in renewables to boost job benefits in this sector, currently estimated as employing over three million people.
Download the publication: Renewable Energy Jobs: Status, Prospects & Policies

Release of global wind statistics: Wind Energy Powers Ahead Despite Economic Turmoil
Annual market statistics from the wind sector show that the wind industry installed just over 41,000 MW of new clean, reliable wind power in 2011, bringing the total installed capacity globally to more than 238,000 MW at the end of last year. This represents an increase of 21%, with an increase in the size of the annual global market of just over 6%.  Today, about 75 countries worldwide have commercial wind power installations, with 22 of them already passing the 1 GW level. Further reading: GWEC’s press release
UNEP Releases Report on Financing Renewable Energy in Sub-Saharan Africa
The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has released a report titled “Financing Renewable Energy in Developing Countries: Drivers and Barriers for Private Finance in Sub-Saharan Africa.” The report was released to mark the African launch of the 2012 UN International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, which took place on the side of 12th Special Session of the UNEP Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum (GCSS-12/GMEF). |Read more...

WWEC Call for Papers Extended 
The World Wind Energy Association WWEA and the German Wind Energy Association BWE are pleased to invite papers and presentations for the 11th World Wind Energy Conference and Exhibition WWEC2012, taking place 3-5 July 2012 in Bonn, Germany. The conference is aimed at presenting, exchanging and discussing the latest knowledge on the state of wind energy and renewable energy in general, including the state of the technology.
WWEC2012 will feature the special topic of "Community Power – Citizens' Power", referring to the development and ownership of renewable energy projects by local citizens and communities including farmers and landowners, cooperatives, municipalities, local and regional utilities, as well as other partners..
Visit for more information about the conference.

Upcoming Events 

February 2012

Local Renewables: South-South Cooperration with cities in India, Indonesia and South Africa
South Africa. 29 February 2012 |Event details

March 2012

National Conference on Green Design
New Delhi, India. 1-2 March 2012 |Event details
Revision 2012 - New Renewable Direction for Japan
Tokyo, Japan. 9-10 March 2012 |Event details
IEA Workshop: Buildings Energy Efficiency Policies
Paris, France. 16 March 2012 |Event details
ECOWAS Regional Bioenergy Forum
Bamako, Mali. 19-20 March 2012 |Event details
International Energy Conference
London, UK. 21 March 2012 |Event details
Lessons from Japan's Disaster
London, UK. 22 March 2012 |Event details
ESHA SHP Postgraduate Course
Vienna, Austria. 26 March-29 June 2012 |Event details
Fifth Energy Efficiency Global Forum
Orlando, Florida, USA. 27-29 March 2012 |Event details

April 2012

2nd IEA Energy Training Week
Paris, France. 2-6 April 2012 |Event details
EWEA 2012
Copehagen, Denmark. 16-19 April 2012 |Event details
ECOWAS Regional Workshop on Small Scale Hydropower
Monrovia, Liberia. 16-20 April 2012 |Event details
Fourth African Carbon Forum
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. 18-20 April 2012 |Event details
World Earth Day
22 April 2012 |Event details
Teaming up for Renewable Heating and Cooling
Copehagen, Denmark. 26-27 April 2012 |Event details
Clean Energy Ministerial
London, UK. 25-26 April 2012 |Event details

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