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Current International Update

International developments reported in the current issue of ELR's Weekly Update appear below. For previously reported international news, please use the filter function on the left. For older material reported between 2000 and 2010, visit the Weekly Update Archives.

Volume 44, Issue 32

GERMANY’S RENEWABLE ENERGY CAPACITY TO INCREASE 23% BY 2019, WITH INCREASING COSTS FOR CONSUMERS

Country: Germany

Data released by transmission grid firms on Friday, November 14, show that Germany’s energy capacity from renewable sources will increase by 23% between 2015 and 2019; however, related costs will also rise by over a fifth. The calculations are required in annual data from four transmission system operators to help gauge the cost of renewable energy subsidies, which are passed on to consumers as a surcharge on energy bills.

US-CHINA CLIMATE DEAL BRINGS WORLD CLOSER TO LIMITING WARMING TO 2 DEGREES

Country: China, United States

Researchers for the Climate Action Tracker say that the deal to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions reached between the United States and China—the world’s two largest emitters—on Wednesday, November 12, brings the world closer to limiting rising temperatures to 2 degrees Celsius. This level is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change target for avoiding the worst effects of climate change. Under the deal, the United States has pledged to reduce emissions to about 28% below 2005 levels by 2025, doubling the current pace of emissions reductions.

SOUTH AFRICA TO ADDRESS ACID-MINE DRAINAGE IN JOHANNESBURG THROUGH $900 MILLION FUND

Country: South Africa

South Africa’s Department for Water and Sanitation announced that funding for a program to clean up toxic water contamination from abandoned mines in and around Johannesburg was recently secured between the Department and the National Treasury. The contamination, or acid-mine drainage, occurs from the flooding of abandoned mine shafts. As the water drains through the mines it is contaminated with toxic metals before returning to rivers and streams.