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International Update Volume 44, Issue 5

CARIBBEAN ISLANDS AGREE TO SWAP DIESEL POWER FOR RENEWABLE SOURCES

Caribbean

Last Thursday, several Caribbean nations committed to start replacing diesel generators with renewable energy sources. The countries signed the agreement at a meeting hosted by the Carbon War Room, an organization cofounded by British billionaire Richard Branson to fight climate change. Historically, Caribbean islands have had very high electricity costs and have relied heavily on diesel generators for power. As a result, the islands have a significant opportunity to pursue green energy, according to Lynn Tabernacki, managing director of renewable energy programs at the U.S.

GERMAN ENERGY HIGHWAY FACES OPPOSITION

Germany

A plan to better distribute renewable energy throughout Germany has been met with significant resistance. While nearly 25% of Germany’s energy came from renewable sources in 2013, the production of green energy is highly uneven—the North is soon to produce more wind energy than it needs, while the South is still heavily dependent on nuclear power. The proposed energy highway, which would run from Wilster in Schleswig-Holstein to Grafenrheinfeld in Bavaria, would help resolve this imbalance. In the South, however, a protest movement has sprung up in response to the plan.

PROPOSED RAIL AND ROAD PROJECTS THREATEN NEPAL'S CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK

Nepal

Nepal’s Chitwan National Park, home to some of the world’s largest populations of rhinoceros and tigers, may be in jeopardy due to government plans for a railroad that would cut the park in half and eight new feeder roads that would run through the area. In addition to rhinos and tigers, Chitwan—a UNESCO World Heritage site—has a number of threatened species, including four-horned antelope, sloth bears, Asiatic elephants, and the critically endangered gharial.