India- Energy Mix

1973 Energy Mix

  • 61% renewables, including fuelwood
  • 22% coal
  • 15% oil
  • 2% HEP
  • 0% Gas
  • 0% Nuclear

2005 Energy Mix

  • 30% renewables, including fuelwood
  • 39% coal
  • 24% oil
  • 1% HEP
  • 5% Gas
  • 1% Nuclear

India’s energy consumption has increased by 300% since 1973. Population and demand for fuel have increased greatly, which has meant that India now has to rely on imports for its energy needs; particularly for more volatile regions of the world.

India’s own oil reserves are limited even as the country is becoming more oil reliant. India is training many engineers and is investing a lot of money in research and development of renewable fuels. With limited native resources, India is turning to nuclear power, and is reliant on Russian expertise to help manage its energy gap until technology, finances and infrastructure improve enough to support the use of renewable energy.

India is committed to researching and developing solar power sources. In March 2010, the World Bank invested US$20 million into developing further solar power stations such as the 2MW plant by India’s Azure Group. India plans to generate 20MW of solar power by 2020.

India has also built several dams:

Narmada Mega Dam Scheme

The scheme consists of 3,200 major, 135 medium and more than 3,000 smaller dams. The largest is the Sardar Saravar dam. The dam supplies water for agriculture, HEP and drinking water for 20 million people. Howver, it is mostly a vanity project; the same result could have been achieved with far smaller projects.


Namibia Energy Mix

Namibia has a GDP per capita of US$6,400. Its main industries are agriculture and mining, both of which are energy intensive; the country has an annual per capita energy usage of 7.5MWh.

Namibia relies on fuels imported from South Africa. Electricity generation runs at 387MWh but demand can exceed this, so Namibia has to import 50% of its energy. Namibia produces less than 1/3 of its energy needs.

70% of urban households are connected to the national grid. In rural areas, only 15% of homes are connected.

A few energy reserves within the country have been identified but overseas investment would  need to be put in to use them.

Namibia is the world’s 6th largest exporter of uranium ore, so it would be good for the country to be able to use this rather than exporting. However, this would need foreign financial and management aid.

Namibia recieves an average solar radiation of 6kWhm^-2 daily, which could be used to supply solar energy to the grid. Namibia is considering setting up concentrated solar plants and coastal wind farms and a mega dam on the border with Angola.

Southampton Geothermal Energy

The businesses supplied by Southampton’s geothermal energy scheme is one of the largest commercially developed community heating and cooling networks in the UK. In the early 1980’s part of the city’s plan to become self-sustaining in energy, the council took advantage of a geothermal borehole commissioned by the department of energy. Due to insufficient resources, the Department of Energy did not proceed but Sothampton pioneered district heating, in co-operated with Utilicom Ltd.

In 1986, Southampton began pumping heat from the geothermal borehole through a district heating network. Since then, several combined heat and power engines and backup boilers for heating have been added. The scheme starter with just the Civic Centre as a single costumer and now has 1,000s of customers, including Southampton University, a hospital, BBC television studios, one of Europe’s largest shopping centres and many other businesses or buildings.

A 725kW CHP engine guarantees the secure operation of the hospital supplying its heat and electricity.

  • District energy network took £7 million to develop
  • Annual sales of 40GWh of heat and 8GWh of cooling
  • 11 km of cooling and heating pipes
  • Saves 11,000 tons of carbon emissions annually
  • 85% efficient (average of about 38% efficiency for a centralised power station)
  • High efficiency lead to it winning a Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development in 2001 and a National Energy Efficiency Award in 2006


The Millbrook scheme will be one of the largest community heating developments in the UK, only costing £55 million.

  • Over 4,000 homes to be connected, including 3,000 council owned dwelling and 1,000 privately owned homes
  • 8 schools and 9 other buildings owned by the council will also be included
  • The CHP plant will produce 50MW of electricty to the local distribution network; enough to power 85,000 homes
  • Set to deliver around 80% of Southampton’s pledged carbon emissions reductions; saving 170,000 tons annually

Limpet, Islay, Scotland

Limpet stands for Land Installed Marine Powered Energy Transformer. The Limpet device began operating in 2004, and was the first wave power project in the UK. Waves push air into a gully, and out through a turbines, each connected to a 250 kW generator. It is built into the shore, and has financial backing from the EU.


  • Renewable
  • No pollutant chemicals
  • Cheap running costs
  • The machines are low-lying and do not spoil landscapes
  • The UK has a lot of coastline and powerful waves from the Atlantic Ocean


  • Needs windy coastal areas
  • Unpredictable and depends on the weather
  • Produces noise pollution
  • Storms can damage the machines
  • Rust, seaweed and barnacles can also damage it


  • Wavegen says there could be sufficient renewable wave power aroudn the UK to generate enough electric power to exceed the domestic electricity demands
  • Some research suggests less than 0.1% of the renewable energy within the oceans could supply five times the global demand for energy
  • On shore or near shore plants could be designed as part of the harbour walls or water-breakers, performing a dual role for a community
  • Islay island, where Limpet was built, is now self-sufficient for energy
  • Islay now no longer needs fossil fuels. This is especially useful because energy is not always reliable in remote areas such as Islay.
  • The building has provided income for local hotels and related businesses due to media interest, which has helped the unemployment rates
  • The project was built to withstand winter storms

(Image Sources: )


Greenhouse Development

The Greenhouse project is part of the South Leeds urban regeneration scheme, and is 10 minutes’ walk away from Leeds’ city centre, and is also close to the main railway station and motorway network. A disused former industrial building i being redeveloped to form part of the first carbon-zero mixed-use development in the UK which produces more energy than it uses. The development will have 172 one to three bedroom eco-homes and offices, all set around a communal landscaped courtyard.

The scheme includes:

  • Shops and cafes
  • A medical centre
  • A nursery
  • Parks with children’s playgrounds
  • A sports centre with a swimming pool
  • A conference centre with a full range of business facilities
  • High-tech offices
  • Allotments where people can grow fruit and vegetables

Sustainable design

Energy generation

  • Ground-source heat pumps draw water from 80 m below the building and use heat-exchange technology to provide hot water, heating and air cooling
  • One large wind turbine provides electricity for every home, as well as for local businesses
  • Smaller rooftop wind turbines provide electricity for lighting corridors and open spaces
  • Rooftop solar panels will be used for hot water in each home.

Energy saving technology

  • A “super insulation” system will keep the homes warm in winter and cool in summer
  • Double-glazing units will reduce heat loss
  • Low-energy washing machines and appliances are provided in each home


  • A car club of vehicles powered by renewable energy is available for residents to use
  • “Green” cabs and buses using renewable energy are available for residents’ use
  • Every house will have bicycle storage and free bike hire will be available

Resource management

  • Allotments are available so residents can grow food
  • Recycling facilities available


There are 313km of marked pistes in Zermatt and Cervinia. To support skiers, there is a one cog railway, an underground funicular railway, nine cable cars, five gondola-lifts, eight chair-lifts and nine drag-lifts. Due to this usage, environmental management of these slopes is very important.

In 20002, Zermatt Mountain Cableways (ZMC) appointed a party composed of environmental and planning firms to work out an overall plan for “sustainable skiing areas around Zermatt”.

Damage inventory

Tourist developments have previously left masses of waste behind on the mountains. IN 2002, the ZMC made an inventory of the leftover remains. By the end of 2004, half of the damage they prioritised to repair had been. In 2005, the route of a lift for snowboarders, the Blattenlift, was restored by landscaping to make the area appear more natural.

Protection of forests and wild game

In 2003, the ZMC collaborated with various conservationists to draw up a forest wild game protection programme to aid conditions for wildlife in the winter. Segregated conservation areas were fenced off from ski routes and marked with notices. Game observation points were made off the normal pathways allowing animals to be watched with minimal disturbance to them. An information campaign has been made to make visitors and locals more sensitive to the needs of the wildife. Off route skiing can be fatal to wildlife.

A dry-stone wall has been built at Lower Schwarzee to protect marginal vegetation from being trodden on and contaminated.

Restoring nature

A restoration project took place in the Gant region in 2005. A large number of ski routes were restored.


Replanting damaged areas on high ground can be very difficult. It is essential to reduce erosion caused by afforestation- afforestation in mountainous environments can increase the rates of avalanches and landslides. By sowing seeds and bringing in young plants, the group covered holes in the vegetation to help secure the slopes.

Monitoring building works

All building work, and replanting of areas is monitored by scientifically trained specialists. Buildings have to comply with environmental legislation, aiming to work long term with consideration for conservation and the environment.

Environmental education

ZMC is placing emphasis on communicating the importance of the local ecology. Information boards have been placed through the Schwarzee Nature Conservation Area (SNCA). In 2005, a glacier path was opened so visitors could see the Gant-Findel glacier region’s glaciers.

Curitiba, the Most Livable City

 Curitiba has a population of 2.5 million, and is the first Brazilian city to have delegated bus lanes as part of its integrated transport system.


The Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) system has four elements:

  • Direct line buses, operating at key pick-up points and running directly into the city centre
  • Speedy buses, operating on five main routes into and out of the city with limited stops
  • Inter-district buses, joining up districts without entering the city centre
  • Feeder mini-buses, picking up people from residential areas and taking them to terminal points on main routes

The system has a smart card system and terminals have shops, cafes and a post office. The BRT is like a cheaper rail service. The local authority has recently switched to using a mixture of diesel and biofuel which is less polluting than just diesel and also helps encourage farming and agriculture. The system maintains 2,100 buses along 385 lines. There are 5000 bus stops, 351 tube stations and 29 integrating terminals.

  • 1.3 million passengers per day
  • 80% of all commuters using the buses
  • 30 million fewer car trips per year

Waste disposal

In 1989, Curitiba became Brazil’s first city with widespread recycling facilities. Since then 419,000 tons have been separated out. 70% of the waste is recycled. The waste disposal has focused on employing the previously unemployed, including the homeless and those recovering from substance (mostly alcohol) abuse. Recovered materials are sold to local industries and fund social programs.

Green exchange

Residents of 6 neighbourhoods have been able to bring waste to centres where they have exchanged 1,000 tons of garbage for nearly a million bus tokens and 1,200 tons of food since 1991. 7,000 people benefit from about 44 tons of food annually at the moment. In 3 years, 100 schools traded 200 tons for 1.9 million books. It improves the diet of the poor and earns farmers business.

Green space

When flood control was distributed out in the 1970’s, the city used funding to but spare land and made a network of 30 parks including lakes.The city has 51 m^2 of green space per person and an effective flood control system.

There are 200 km of cycle paths and 1.5 million trees along streets. Builders get tax breaks if they integrate green space into their plans. Land around the parks is more valuable, so helps fund the city’s economy. 

Cultural heritage

Buildings are often put to use in new ways and buses when retired are used as mobile classrooms or offices. A flooded quarry turned into the Wire Opera House in two months, and another into the Free University of the Environment. The refuse dump became a botanical garden.

Down town areas have been pedestrianised somewhat, including a 24-hour mall.

The “Sol Criado” system finances restoration of historical buildings, and creation of green spaces. Buildings can be built to a “maximum” height, and if they are, they have to donate money to the Sol Criado system.


Since 1990, the Municipal Housing Fund has provided financial support for housing. After the national housing collapse in 1985, people came into Curitiba, and the city’s public housing program bought up the last empty large plot available within the city- which had enough space for 50,000 houses.   Landowners built the homes themselves and each received a pair of trees and a housing consultation with an architect.

(Image Sources: (Oren Hirsch, 2010) )

Downham Market biofuel refinery

In Downham Market, East England, a biofuel refinery backs onto a sugar refinery plant. The factors have combined heating and power; 80% of the energy used to manufacture the biofuel is waste product from the sugar. The site produces 50MW annually which is fed back to the national grid. Surplus heat is injected into greenhouses, which receive the CO2 emissions, and also helps crop growth.

Germany energy mix

Current energy mix

  • 90% fossil fuels
  • 7% biomass
  • 1% wind power
  • 1% hydroelectric power
  • 1% other renewables

Wind power has grown significantly from 1990 to 2009- 719W to 37,809W.

The government is using initiatives and financial incentives to help in sustainability. Individuals can sell surplus energy they produce back to the national grid.

In just a year, Germany’s use of renewable energy sources has saved 107 million tons of CO2 emissions, and 300,000 people work in the renewable energy industry.

UK Energy

The United Kingdom produces 3% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, yet only has 1% of the population.

Until recently, the government was subsidising solar panels for anyone who wanted them. Those acquiring the panels still paid the majority of the cost, but the government was still helping to fund the development of green energy.

1990 energy mix

  • 64.2% coal
  • 11% oil
  • 1% natural gas
  • 21.5% nuclear
  • 3.3% renewables

2008 energy mix

  • 36.9% coal
  • 1.3% oil
  • 34.5% natural gas
  • 21.4% nuclear
  • 5.9% renewables

Changes in this time period

Gas is less expensive than coal, and transports more easily. It also produces less CO2 than coal per unit energy produced (It is a cleaner fuel).

Oil fields in the North Sea have been for the most part depleted, and much of the gas is, so gas is being imported from Russia, Norway and other gas-rich countries.

The demand for electricity has increased by 1/3. The UK is no longer dependent on coal power

Plans for increased sustainability (It should be noted that there are no strict deadlines)

  • Smart electricity meters
  • Tougher environmental standards for new buildings, with a code for sustainable homes
  • Working to phase out inefficient goods (eg limiting the power of vacuum cleaners by the EU)
  • Tripling electricity generated from renewables
  • Setting up a carbon trading scheme for large companies
  • £20 million spent in funding public procurement of projects to lower carbon usage.