Renewable energy could supply Russia and Central Asian countries with all the electricity they need by 2030 − and cut costs significantly at the same time. A new study says that Russia and the countries of Central Asia could become a highly energy-competitive region by getting all their electricity from renewable sources within the next 15 years. So far, most of the region’s governments appear not to have found the will to realise this huge potential. But researchers at Lappeenranta University of Technology in Finland calculate that the cost of electricity produced entirely from renewables would be half the price of modern nuclear technology and fossil-fuel burning if carbon capture and storage (CCS) had to be used. This would make all the countries more competitive by cutting their costs, but would require the building of a super-grid to allow countries to share the benefits of a range of renewable energy sources. The geographical area of the research − which did not include transport or heating − covers much of the northern hemisphere. Many of the countries in the area rely on the production and use of fossil fuels and nuclear power. As well as Russia, the researched area includes Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, as well as the Caucasus and Pamir regions including Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, and Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
Climate News Network 5th Jan 2016 read more »