Global Renewables

Tree shaped wind turbines in Paris

France is pushing ahead with exciting and unique developments in renewable energy in the last couple of months.

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Cassandra House

Apr 11, 2015 • 2 min read

artist's impression of tree shaped wind turbine in front of Parisian buildings

France is pushing ahead with exciting and unique developments in renewable energy in the last couple of months. New Wind is a French company that is installing tree-shaped wind turbines in Place de la Concorde in Paris. The design is much more aesthetically pleasing than traditional wind turbines, so the company’s founder Jérôme Michaud-Larivière is optimistic that the design may ultimately be used in residential areas in backyards. Although the efficiency of the tree wind turbines is not as high as traditional ones, they do utilise previously untapped smaller air currents, which means they can produce electricity at slower wind speeds and may be more profitable in the long run.

The Eiffel Tower is also joining the renewable energy trend, with the installation of two camouflaged wind turbines onto the second floor. These turbines are joined by other sustainable changes such as LED lighting, rainwater collection and solar panel; with the turbines alone expected to produce 10’000 kW hours of electricity every year. This amount of energy production is enough to supply power to the entire first floor which includes exhibits, a souvenir shop and restaurants.

The US is also showing a greater commitment to climate change and renewable energy this month with a commitment to a new international climate commitment. This proposed commitment sees the US pledge to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to 28% below 2005 levels by 2025, with reductions of up to 80% or more by the year 2050. Many actions will be taken to achieve these targets, including cutting emissions from vehicles and power plants and also the increased and widespread use of renewable energy. The US joins the European Union, Russia, Switzerland, Mexico and Norway who have already supplied proposed commitments in preparation for the COP 21 Conference in Paris later this year. President Barack Obama has also announced a new solar initiative this month, “Solar Ready Vets”, which will provide solar installation training to veterans at military bases across the US. He said that the plan will both boost the economy and the alternative energy industry, which is an area already adding jobs faster than the rest of the economy.

Australia has yet to announce its commitment to the COP 21 Conference, but with so many world leaders pledging their support to climate change action and renewable energy we will hopefully see some movement soon.


Alternative Energy News, 23 March 2015, “Tree Shaped Wind Turbines to be Installed in Paris”, accessed 9 April 2015.

Alternative Energy News, 16 March 2015, “The Eiffel Tower Installs Two Wind Turbines”, accessed 9 April 2015.

Waskow, D and Meek, K, 2 April 2015, “US Climate Commitment Should Spur Other Countries to Act”, accessed 9 April 2015.

Olorunnipa, T, 6 March 2015, “Obama visits Utah to tout solar energy as good for jobs, climate”, accessed 9 April 2015.

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