Interest in an international competition for renewable energy have increased by 30 percent since last year.LINZ, Austria, AT, 2002-01-18 [SolarAccess.com] The Energy Globe Award is organized by Energiesparverband in Austria. At the first Award in 2000, there were 920 entries from 72 countries. Last year, interest grew to 1,000 submission of projects and initiatives from 75 countries. This year, 1,300 projects from 98 countries were submitted by the deadline of October 24. The United States submitted the most proposals at 57, followed by Britain with 54 and Australia in third spot with 53. Austria and Germany were excluded from the ranking. Other major countries include India with 39, Italy with 36, Spain at 31 and Bulgaria with 25. There are five categories: housing, companies, transport, municipalities & public institutions, and other. Winners in each category receive a prize of Euro 10,000, along with presentation of a trophy at the Energy Gala ceremony in Wels, Austria, to which organizers expect 1,500 guests. The Award is open to companies, private and public institutions and individuals from around the world, and submitted projects range from biomass and CHP, to district heating and heat pumps, to solar architecture and photovoltaics. Some of the finalists include ‘Wind Power Equivalent to a Nuclear Power Station’ from E.H.N. – Energía Hidroeléctrica de Navarra in Spain; ‘Energy trough Enterprise – seed capital for sustainable energy’ from the E+Co/United Nations Foundation in the U.S.; ‘The World’s Largest Biomass Power Plant’ by Oy Alholmens Kraft and Timberjack Energy Technology in Finland; ‘The Solar Hearing Aid’ by Botswana Technology Centre in Botswana; ‘The Regeneration Project – a Christian Response to Climate Change’ by Episcopal Power & Light; ‘BedZED: the Zero Energy Urban Village’ by Peabody Trust and BP Solar; ‘Power to Women: Solar Energy for Vietnam’ by the Vietnam Women’s Union and Solar Electric Light Fund; and ‘Swapping Debts for Sustainable Energy’ by EcoFund. The projects will be presented at the World Sustainable Energy Day conference, which is held with the ‘Energiesparmesse’ trade show on renewable energy, which attracted 1,600 exhibitors and 200,000 visitors last year. The World Sustainable Energy Day claims to be the largest annual conference on sustainable energy use in Europe. In addition to the gala dinner and award ceremony for the Energy Globe Award 2002, and the conference and trade show in early March, there will be a seminar on innovative solar technologies, guided tours of the Energiesparmesse (in English, French, Italian, Czech/Slovak, Spanish and German) and a seminar on financing sustainable energy investment. “In the past years, there have been thousands of initiatives and projects in the fields of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources world-wide showing how sustainable energy solutions can make a practical contribution to environmental and climate protection and to economic development,” says organizer Christiane Egger. Winners in 2001 included the Sacramento Municipal Utility District for its installation of 15 MW of solar PV, Scharoplan of Austria for its biomass tri-generation plant, Copenhagen Environment & Energy Office for the Middelgrunden 40 MW wind project in Denmark, SOLE of Greece for the largest solar cooling plant in the world, Marstal Fjernvarme of Denmark for the Danish solar island, Gesamtschule Blankenese of Germany and Tansania for its solar energy in Ibungila, and Solar Engineering Services of South Africa for the Maphephetheni program to promote renewable energy.