Tag Archives: France

Increase the security of Swiss energy supply | Instant News

On January 8, 2021, a temporary fault affected the European power grid which could shut down the entire European grid. A complete blackout was only avoided thanks to the combined efforts of all grid operators and controlled outages of service to consumers in France and Italy. The reason for the avoidable catastrophe: the failure of major components on the European power grid triggered the closure of several subnetworks for about an hour.

Like similar incidents in the past, this episode shows that acute power outages are possible even in highly developed countries. At the same time, the energy industry is currently in a transition phase. The Energy Strategy 2050 commits Switzerland to a phased withdrawal from nuclear energy, coupled with energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy expansion. In addition, the government has set a net zero emission target by 2050.

But what happens if there are other serious technical problems, or perhaps political or economic shocks? Answering this question is the task of the ten institutions involved in the “PASTI” (Deliverable and Resilient Energy for Switzerland) project, with a budget of six million Swiss francs. It is one of four projects in the first call for a new SWEET (SWEET Energy research for Energy Transition) funding program supported by the Swiss Federal Energy Office.

Over the next six years, researchers will study specific events that could affect the future Swiss energy system and find ways to make energy supplies as sustainable, adaptable and resilient as possible. “Beyond sustainability, making Switzerland’s energy supply safe and self-sufficient is a top priority,” said Tom Kober, Head of the Energy Economics Group at the Energy Systems Analysis Laboratory at PSI’s Paul Scherrer Institute, and project coordinator of the SURE.

Many different factors come into play

An unexpected shock – what Tom Kober calls a “disturbing event” – can have many different causes. For example, critical energy infrastructure may not be fully available due to technical or energy policy constraints, or extreme weather events could substantially limit the country’s electricity generating capacity in the short term.

But it is not always a disaster that limits energy supply as examples such as hydropower, deep geothermal energy systems or large-scale solar parks have shown time and time again: other factors can influence individual energy technology breakthroughs, such as public acceptance, regulatory conditions or overall funding arrangements. That’s why these aspects also play an important role in the resilience of future energy systems.

Against this background, the SURE project from the start focused on close collaboration with 16 practitioners, including local authorities, energy providers and policy makers. The three case studies in Ticino, Zurich and the Basel region focus on specific aspects. In the Basel region, for example, the emphasis is on the sustainability and resilience of the electricity supply to local industries. Partners will organize regular workshops to coordinate the research objectives and requirements of the various actors and develop strategic instruments to support decision-makers.

Future plans include an online platform to help large segments of society better understand the compromises between the various dimensions of sustainability and resilience, and to resolve potential conflicts between competing measures to achieve a sustainable and stable supply of energy in the future. SURE’s goal is to support policymakers, technology developers and businesses with recommendations and guidelines, to help them shape their respective strategies for a more sustainable and resilient energy future.

Breaking into new territory with holistic modeling methods

The SURE project is new territory for research partners. Switzerland has a long tradition of computer modeling energy scenarios. This includes projects funded under the Swiss Competency Center for Energy Research (SCCER) program, which was completed last year. To date, however, Switzerland has never had modeling that covers future shock scenarios – until 2035 or even 2050 – combined with an analytical approach based on multiple indicators.

In addition, computer models for aspects such as infrastructure, renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainability, supply security and cost efficiency have never been combined with such a systematic approach. “This is definitely a first, and we want to develop our quantitative models and indicators further along these lines,” said Tom Kober. To that end, SURE is also working closely with three other SWEET projects that are researching innovations in the renewable energy sector to support the implementation of the 2050 Energy Strategy.

SWEET brings together nine leading Swiss research institutes, including ETH Zurich and EPFL Lausanne, plus its only foreign partner: the E3-Modeling consultancy in Athens, which has built an international reputation for its models analyzing technical and economic linkages at European and global levels.

The SURE project consortium includes the following research partners who are funded by the SWEET program of the Swiss Federal Energy Office:

  • Paul Scherrer Institute
  • ETH Zurich
  • Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne
  • Swiss Italian University
  • TEP Energy GmbH
  • Southern Swiss University of Applied Sciences and Arts
  • University of Bern
  • University of Geneva
  • Zurich ZHAW University of Applied Sciences
  • E3-Modeling SA

Text: Bernd Müller


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Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Germany, France are spending billions on new fighter jets | Instant News

Germany, France and Spain are negotiating a multibillion-euro project to develop a joint European fighter jet, the Future Combat Air System (FCAS). Setting aside the more than 1 million deaths in Europe from COVID-19 due to the European Union’s “group immunity” policy claiming there is no money to fund scientific social distancing policies, they are instead preparing to spend hundreds of billions of euros on war planning.

Yesterday, France’s Junior Defense Minister for Armaments Joël Barre announced that the final agreement on the FCAS could be announced this week. The financing agreement between Airbus and Dassault on the FCAS was announced on April 6. Airbus, French defense contractor Dassault and Thales, and various subcontractors across Europe are the main companies involved in the FCAS, which is expected to replace Airbus’ Rafale Dassault and Eurofighter jets by 2040.

French Air Force Dassault Rafale (Wikimedia Commons)

Last month, German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and his French counterpart, Florence Parly, met to discuss the FCAS program. This comes amid reports that German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative government is eager for the full financing of the FCAS program before the Bundestag (parliament) elections in September.

Kramp-Karrenbauer stated that the program was in “a very decisive phase”. He indicated that some final points, such as engine development, still need clarification, adding, “we as politicians expect the industry to come together to find a viable basis (for the next step of the project) that we can accept.”

However, there are lingering tensions, as German and French unions fight over which model and which factory is most involved in building the fighter jet.

For his part, Parly called the FCAS “above all a political project,” stating: “It is the desire of France and Germany to give our soldiers the best they can and to build the European defense program that both countries desire. We both think the same thing: we need deal at the end of the month. “


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New Australian Mission in the Marshall Islands and French Polynesia | Instant News

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Australia continues to grow our strong relationship with the Pacific, today opening two new diplomatic missions in the Republic of the Marshall Islands and French Polynesia.

Today’s opening brings Australia’s diplomatic network in the Pacific to nineteen missions, making it the largest diplomatic network in the region of any country.

Australia now has official representation for every member of the Pacific Islands Forum, meeting the Australian Government’s key Pacific Step commitments.

The Australian Embassy to the Republic of the Marshall Islands and the Consulate General in French Polynesia are now working to support Australia’s interests and increase engagement in our environment.

The new mission builds on the opening of diplomatic missions in Tuvalu in 2018, Cook Islands and Palau in 2019, and Niue in 2020.

We continue to strengthen our cooperation in areas such as maritime security, infrastructure, climate change and women’s empowerment, as well as our support for the health response to the COVID-19 pandemic and promote regional economic recovery.

Australia is committed to continuing to work with our Pacific partners for a prosperous and safe region.

/ Public Release. This material comes from the original organization and may be point-in-time, edited for clarity, style and length. view more here.


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France resists Britain’s post-Brexit temporary changes to fishing permits | Instant News

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France has asked the European Commission to intervene after rejecting Britain’s temporary changes to fishing permits under the Brexit agreement, which would affect fishing rights on the Channel Islands.

FranceThe maritime ministry said on Monday that it was considering new requirements put forward by ENGLISH as “null and void” and called for strict compliance with fisheries as negotiated under the Brexit agreement.

“If the UK wants to introduce new provisions, then it has to hand it over to the European Commission, which then informs us, which allows us to engage in dialogue. At this stage, we find that these new technical measures don’t apply to our fishermen as they stand. , “The ministry told AFP.

The new provisions concern new fishing zones, particularly around Jersey Island waters, “where boats can and cannot go”, while specifying the “number of days” fishermen can spend at sea and “with what equipment”, the department said.

On Friday, Britain published a list of 41 fishing vessels equipped with a Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) and allowed to fish in the waters around the island of Jersey since Saturday.

The European Commission has been briefed on the new provisions and is expected to “enter into a dialogue with Britain to understand what the changes mean and to give us some clarification”, the ministry said.

“It is clear that there needs to be a response to what the Jersey authorities have done with regards to fishing authorization. We hope the state will take retaliatory action,” said Dimitri Rogoff, president of the Normandy regional fisheries committee.

The Brittany and Normandy regional fisheries committee threatened “the suspension of all economic ties with Jersey, including the ferry line between Jersey and Continental Europe”, in a joint statement sent to AFP.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)


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Hundreds of boats line Lake Geneva in an art project | Instant News

Hundreds of boats lined Lake Geneva on Sunday in an artistic representation of the border between Switzerland and France that stretches 36.7 miles in the middle of the waterway.

Boats prepare to line up on Lake Leman to uncover the French-Swiss border unseen during the so-called artistic event "Brief Alignment" by architect Lausanne Bastian Marzoli, in Saint-Gingolph, near Geneva, Switzerland, May 2, 2021.
The ship prepares to line up to reveal the French-Swiss border unseen during the “Short Alignment” event.

The “Short Alignment” project envisioned by architect Lausanne Bastian Marzoli as a collective show to reflect on the nature of the borders, organizers said.

Boats prepare to line up on Lake Leman to uncover the French-Swiss border unseen during the so-called artistic event "Brief Alignment" by architect Lausanne Bastian Marzoli, in Saint-Gingolph, near Geneva, Switzerland, May 2, 2021.
The invisible border in the middle of the lake stretches for 36.7 miles.

Boats from yachts to rowboats took part in the event, which was attended by more than 250 ships.


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