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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

SolarWorld Signs Letter of Intent for Korean Cell Manufacturing Plant

In order to supply increasing demand in Asian markets, German solar manufacturer, SolarWorld AG is planning an integrated solar cell and module production site in South Korea.
SolarWorld CEO, Frank H. Asbeck, has signed a letter of intent in Singapore with Mr. Hyun Woo, chairman of the South Korean company SolarPark Engineering Co. Ltd. located in Seoul. According to the letter of intent both contracting parties plan to build an integrated solar cell and module production facility in South Korea.
The project is meant to be managed as an equitable Joint Venture named SolarWorld Korea Ltd. The first investment step is foreseen to amount to €60 million . The manufacturing plant is intended to initially dispose of a yearly 60 megawatts (MW) capacity which will be increased later on to 120 MW. The aim is to initiate production already by the end of 2008.
The contracting parties agree that the integrated production will procure its silicon-based wafers from the SolarWorld Group. The solar modules produced by SolarWorld Korea Ltd. will be exclusively distributed in Korea, Japan and China. Both parties have already been successfully working together in South Korea for a long time.
On behalf of Gochang SolarPark Co. Ltd., the SolarWorld Group is supplying a 15-MW solar project in the south-western province of Chollabuk-Do. This is until now the biggest individual solar project in Asia. A further 20 MW solar park is being developed. Thanks to its solid feed-in tariff, South Korea is after Japan the biggest market for grid-connected solar power systems in Asia.

Industrial Manufacturers Are Not Optimistic About the U.S. Economy

Oct. 30, 2007 -- Among industrial manufacturers, optimism in the U.S. economy has dropped to 45% according to the PricewaterhouseCoopers' Q3 Manufacturing Barometer. This is a 17-point drop from the 62% level of optimism reported last quarter.

Consistent with previous quarters, high oil and energy prices are the most likely barrier to growth during the next 12 months, cited by 57% of the respondents. However, lack of demand (cited by 53%), legislative/regulatory pressures (50%) and decreasing profitability (48%) all showed significant increases as potential barriers to future growth.
"Ongoing concerns about high energy costs are now being coupled with similar concerns about lower demand and decreasing profitability," said Barry Misthal, partner and industrial manufacturing sector leader, PricewaterhouseCoopers. "Mix in uncertainty about legislative and regulatory pressures and it's not hard to see why manufacturers are less optimistic about the U.S. economy. However, healthier international prospects are offsetting these lowered expectations on the domestic front."
International markets remain strong for U.S.-based industrial manufacturers with more than three-quarters (79%) expressing optimism about the world economy during the next 12 months. Two-thirds (67%) of those who sell abroad increased their international sales in the most recent quarter.
The majority of manufacturers are scaling back plans for major new investments during the next 12 months. Only 42% are planning new initiatives during the next year, a decrease from 57% citing plans for major investments last quarter. However, the average percent of revenue put aside for major new investments remains high at 8.7%. Those who are investing are looking to spend more on information technology (IT) -- a trend that continues into the third quarter, with 57% planning to expand their IT capabilities.
A little more than half (52%) plan to add new workers over the next 12 months, consistent with hiring plans from the previous quarter. They are concerned about the availability of talent, however, with 37% citing a lack of qualified workers as a potential barrier to future growth.
"The health of the U.S. economy is definitely in question," commented Misthal. "The strong international market has allowed companies to be moderately bullish about their own companies' prospects during the next year, and these companies have maintained interest in new hiring as a result. While September and October are traditionally volatile months for the marketplace, it will be important to see how things play out in the fourth quarter of this year."
For access to the complete Manufacturing Barometer report, please visit

Material, Energy and Climate Change

The industrial sector emits almost 43 percent of the global anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions to produce materials and products. Furthermore, energy is used to move materials and products and process the waste. Hence, a large amount of energy is consumed and CO2 is emitted to sustain our materials system. Until recently, studies investigating mitigation options focused on changes in the energy system. To assess measures to reduce materials consumption, fossil fuels consumption and CO2 emissions, detailed understanding of the material system is needed. In this presentation an overview will be given of the relation between materials and the carbon cycle focusing on the contribution of materials to anthropogenic carbon flows. The presentation will discuss opportunities to reduce CO2 emissions by improving the efficiency with which society uses materials through product design, material substitution, product reuse and material recycling.
Ernst Worrell (Ph.D.) is Manager Energy & Climate Strategies at Ecofys in The Netherlands, focusing on energy and climate strategies for industry. He has experience in a wide number of industries, e.g. cement, iron and steel, pulp and paper, glass, chemicals (e.g. fertilizers, petrochemicals, pharmaceutical), food (breweries, wine, corn milling), petroleum refining, and vehicle assembly. Ernst Worrell has led the industrial energy assessment work at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in the United States since 1998. Until 1998 he co-led the energy efficiency group at the Department of Science, Technology and Society of Utrecht University, The Netherlands. He was a visiting scientist at the Center for Energy and Environmental Studies at Princeton University (USA) in 1994-1995, and a visiting professor at the Universidade de Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 1996. His work includes research and evaluation projects in industrial energy efficiency improvement, greenhouse gas emission mitigation in industry, energy efficiency benchmarking, energy policy, energy modelling, emission trading, energy and materials, and waste processing.
He has experience in multi-national research teams and has lead studies for various governments, the European Commission, World Energy Council and the United Nations. He was a coordinating lead author of the Special Report on Technology Transfer, a lead-author of the IPCC special report on Emission Scenarios, Third and Fourth Assessment Report. He is (co-) author of over 250 publications. He is Editor-in-Chief of the peer-reviewed journal Resources, Conservation and Recycling and associate editor of Energy, the International Journal and editorial board member of Waste Management. He is a member of the Roster of Experts of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) of the Global Environmental Facility (World Bank and United Nations Environmental Program), Member Roster of Experts African Energy Policy Research Network (AFREPREN), and a member of multiple organizing and scientific committees of international conferences.

The weather within; 9 Bio-climatic

Order of magnitude reductions in carbon emissions arising from the environmental control of public buildings are available through judicious design; the exploitation of natural buoyancy effects to naturally ventilate and passively cool, the coupling of controlled ventilation with thermal mass, and the use of natural light whilst carefully limiting solar gains in the overheating season. Environmental design strategies pursuing this intent are presented for nine built projects across a range of climates; Mediterranean, Temperate, the London city heat island to the intense Continental type, for occupancy types ranging from a specialist industrial building, to theatres, libraries and research facilities. Preliminary design simulations are compared with actual measured performance with some commentary on the appropriate contribution of renewable energy techniques to evolving designs.
Alan Short is the Professor of Architecture. He invents low energy naturally ventilated and passively cooled public buildings, and has built, is building, through his practice, in a wide range of climate types, in Ahmedabad, Chicago, Malta, Beijing, London and the UK generally, collaborating on these projects with the BP Institute, the Martin Centre, IESD in Leicester and other leading research institutions in the field. All projects are monitored and the data put into the public realm. His projects have won 'Green Building of the Year' 1995, 'Building of the Year Award' (Building Magazine) 2000, SCONUL's 'Best Academic Library Award' 1998-2003; CIBSE 'Project of the Year' 2003 & 2004; 'CIBSE Environmental Initiative of the Year' 2006; BDA 'Best Public Building', 2006; RIBA Awards 1995, 2000, 2003 and 2006.