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Loss of unregarded forests is at danger level

Tropical trees are dying faster than 35 years ago, whilst 80% of woodlands are degraded

Importing meat may keep rivers clean

Some watersheds deal better with pollution from livestock farming

European cities could suffer under climate change

Predicted increases in drought, floods and heatwaves across continent

Ocean acidification weakens coral skeletons

Coral density could drop by 20% by 2100, study shows

Planet Blog

Comment and analysis from our editorial staff and professionals in the field.

Rotatiload! Synchronous inertia and frequency stability

As we move away from large power plants with massive rotating turbogenerators, there will be problems with maintaining lock-step grid system frequency stability. Wind turbines have much less rotational inertia, PV solar none. Fortunately there are solutions, e.g batteries linked to inverters may be able provide 'synthetic inertia', and the generators in tidal lagoon and tidal barrage projects also offer rotational inertia. We might even, for a stop gap, use old fossil and nuclear plant turbogenerators as so-called synchronous condensers.

Firm power parity metric

Some renewables are variable, so how do we account for the cost of balancing them? There are a variety of approaches, some looking at the cost to consumers, some at the costs to the energy system overall. The costs may not be huge with well-designed smart grid systems, but someone has to pay them.

The cost of power: moving beyond LCOE

Levelised Cost of Energy (LCOE) figures are widely used but are a poor measure of actual energy costs. Can we do better? Can balancing costs be included? And what are we actually measuring - the cost to generators or the cost to consumers?

Focus on...

All the key issues and latest research on Geoengineering

The science behind the negotiations via our COP15 Focus

The latest research and opinion on REDD

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