Friday, July 04, 2008

Evil Oil Investing in Solar Power?

CNet has an article up about a subsidiary of Shell that is jumping into alternative energy whole hog. How so? They are investing $938 Million USD in a great big solar plant.

Japanese Shell subsidiary plans solar-panel plant
Royal Dutch Shell subsidiary Showa Shell Sekiyu, Japan's fifth-largest oil refiner, plans to invest 100 billion yen, or about $938 million, in a solar-panel megaplant, according to AFP.

The planned factory will produce panels with the cumulative annual capacity to produce 1 gigawatt of power, equivalent to that of a small nuclear-power reactor.

Compare that to Egypt who are investing a whopping $30 Million USD into a center for renewable energy.
The centre will carry out research on renewable energy, including the testing of solar and wind power technologies.

It will provide consultancy services to governments and private companies, promote knowledge and technology transfer between companies and governments in the region and the North, and run training programmes to help set up technologies around the region.

The US is also moving to be a bit friendlier to renewable energies:

US Government Agency Reverses Moratorium On Solar Power Proposals
The Bureau of Land Management said it will keep its doors open for new proposals while it studies how large solar plants might affect the environment of undeveloped areas of California and the Southwest. The agency had said last week it would put a hold on new applications pending its environmental review.