week ending 3 October 2008
Government code may be dropped.
The government is considering abandoning the use of the Code for Sustainable Homes for its flagship eco-towns programme. Building has seen draft guidance, written by external consultants for the communities department, that suggests that eco-town homes should instead be measured against a European model of energy output per square metre.
Building 3rd Oct 2008 more >>
A ceremony took place at Larchwood Close in Lingwood to mark the completion of 15 GreenGauge eco homes. BBC presenter Stewart White (pictured) planted a tree to commemorate the affordable housing development which is being monitored by the University of East Anglia.
Great Yarmouth Mercury 3rd Oct 2008 more >>
Air Source Heat Pumps
Industry has welcomed the EU’s decision to categorise air source heat pumps (ASHPs) as a renewable energy source technology. But it is concerned that the compromise amendment does not take into account a number of issues, including the progressive decarbonisation of the grid.
H&V News 2nd October 2008 more >>
Green garden centre
A MULTI-million pound eco-garden centre could be coming to York, creating up to 140 new jobs. Dobbies Garden Centres is hoping to build a new “state-of-the- art garden world”, which would be “extremely” eco-friendly. The use of renewable energy systems, such as micro generation turbines, biomass boiler, energy efficient light fittings with sensors, and solar panels will ensure as much as a quarter of energy usage comes from renewables, together with a grey-water recycling system.
York Press 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
A plumbing and heating equipment supplier has opened its first store for renewable energy products. Plumbing Trade Supplies (PTS), in Lutterworth, has opened the branch in Aylesford, Kent, which sells everything from solar panels to energy efficient domestic boilers. The store will be run by experts in renewable energy.
Business East Midlands 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Welsh Farm Energy
PRACTICAL ways of tackling spiralling farm energy costs come under the spotlight in a new programme launched this month. The first round of events, “Farm Energy – save it, produce it”, will show how to reduce energy costs through better management and efficiency. They will also look at on-farm energy production via anaerobic digestion, biomass, bio-fuels, solar panels, hydro-electricity and wind power.
Daily Post 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
A new hospital at Bonar Bridge will have a biomass system for heating and consideration is being given to generating some electricity by means of a small wind turbine.
Northern Times 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
National Park Unfair
RESIDENTS living in conservation areas in the Yorkshire Dales are being unfairly prevented from accessing renewable energy, say campaigners. Members of the Association of Rural Communities have accused the Yorkshire Dales national Park Authority of making it “impossible” for many residents to have solar panels, and other carbon-reducing measures, installed in their homes.
Northern Echo 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
A 1930s-style house is being built on a university campus to help people who own old homes to save on energy costs. The replica house at Nottingham University will have hundreds of sensors to monitor heat loss and find better ways to update old houses. The project, supported by energy firm E.ON, is meant to learn from the failings of homes of the past. The three-year project will investigate how a suburban home could be upgraded to help reduce CO2 emissions.
BBC 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Renewable winter sports
Developers behind a £350m indoor winter sports resort in Suffolk said they had found ways to generate 75% of energy it would need through renewable sources.
BBC 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Micro-CHP Finance Mechanisms.
What sort of financial support mechanism would best promote the introduction and use of micro-CHP units as a method of cutting carbon emissions? A.D. Hawkes takes a look at how poorly-designed support could lead to gratuitous use of the technology – with no carbon benefits at all.
Cogeneration and on-site power production 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Let there be light
Dundee University is working on a project to bring light to one of the city’s favourite open areas while saving the planet. Work is under way on the development of lights for the bottom of Magdalen Yard Green that would use solar and wind power while illuminating the area.
Courier 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Fuel cell developer Acumentrics Corporation and European heating appliance market leader Merloni Termosanitari (MTS) Group have formed a consortium with major European and North American utilities to demonstrate and field trial a residential solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) micro combined heat and power (mCHP) system. Six leading utilities, including British Gas (Centrica), have joined the consortium.
Euro-investor 2nd Oct 2008 more >>
Fuel cell specialists Ceres Power are now assessing a shortlist of sites for a new factory, as the firm prepares to commercialise its “electro-chemical engine” micro-CHP system for households. This year has seen the company forming a close relationship with British Gas-owners Centrica, the energy company investing £20 million in Ceres in return for a 10% stake, as well as agreeing a forward order for 37,500 units.
New Energy Focus 1st Oct 2008 more >>
This summer, Birmingham took a bold step, holding a week-long climate change festival to promote a lowcarbon future. Its engineering, scientific and manufacturing roots have put it ahead in hydrogen technology, decentralised renewable energy and retrofitting buildings.
Guardian 1st October 2008 more >>
North York Moors
The North York Moors Park Authority has been looking at ways to reduce the authority’s carbon footprint and also working with communities to reduce their consumption through the Community Renewable Energy Project. A copy of the business plan can be seen on the park authority’s website at www.moors.uk.net
Northern Echo 30th Sept 2008 more >>
Small renewable energy firms are being hamstrung by costly and unnecessary red tape that is holding back the green revolution according to the Scottish Lib Dems.
Press and Journal 30th Sept 2008 more >>
Will the Scottish Sustainable Communities Initiative deliver a new utopia? Or is this just eco-tokenism to fast-track new development? The ingredients for a sustainable community should include some non-negotiables: low carbon, high biodiversity buildings, well-connected public travel networks, decentralised renewable energy facilities, natural green networks and sustainable drainage systems.
Scotsman 30th Sept 2008 more >>
Sauce & Chips
AN AWARD-WINNING Mearns food producer has made history with the launch of a new biomass boiler. Macphie of Glenbervie’s eco-credentials received a welcome boost when their new boiler fired up yesterday, making them the first Scottish company to produce food ingredients using green energy from wood chips.
Dundee Courier 30th Sept 2008 more >>
Dorset Farm Shop
AN INDEPENDENT Dorset farm shop has reached the finals of a prestigious awards scheme. The shop has already been recognised for its environmental credentials, with its wind turbines and solar panels winning accolades.
Dorset Echo 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Ceramic Fuel Cells has achieved electrical efficiency of 50% in its proprietary NetGenPlus micro-CHP system, marking a first for the fuel cell industry.
Small Cap News 29th September 2008 more >>
Fuel Cell Store Blog 30th Sept 2008 more >>
Fuel Cell Works 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Hampshire-based solar energy company Solar Technologies has been snapped by energy giant Centrica for £2.8 million in cash. The owners of British Gas said the acquisition will allow it to install solar photovoltaic technology across the UK. Solar Technologies, which is based in Romsey, had already been working with British Gas as a technology contractor for phase two of the Low Carbon Buildings Programme, which involves fitting green energy systems in schools and public buildings.
New Energy Focus 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Commodities Now 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Peter Taylor, the unassuming chairman of Edinburgh boutique hotel group the Town House Company, is still fully confident his new project to open Glasgow’s best hotel will be an unparalleled success. Taylor is deeply committed to renewable energy and conservation. He built an eco-dream home for himself and his wife in Cramond with geothermal heating and speciality insulation. He thinks the hospitality industry, including Visitscotland’s Green Tourism Business Scheme, could do far more than it does.
Scotsman 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Turning homes into their own “power station” for electricity and heating can deliver energy security, cut bills and reduce carbon emissions, it has been claimed. With high electricity and gas prices, micro-generation technology such as solar panels or wind turbines are becoming increasing popular but are still expensive. However, solar panel supplier Solarcentury’s executive chairman Jeremy Leggett said: “It’s a better return on your investment than leaving it in the bank because solar is about more than energy - it’s an asset on your roof.
Herald 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Channel 4 News 29th Sept 2008 more >>
Micro-combined heat and power (micro-CHP) manufacturer and designer Disenco Energy has secured a partnership deal with British Gas. The two companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding which will mean they will collaborate on the development of Disenco’s patented technology and HomePowerPlan (HPP) micro-CHP system. This will include jointly working on trailling, marketing, installing and distribution of the appliance. The Sheffield based company’s HPP system transforms waste heat into electricity and could potentially cut household bills by 35 per cent while also offering the chance to earn money by selling electricity back to the grid. It claims the potential pay back for installing the HPP is under three years. Field trials are expected to start in early 2009 followed by commercialization before the end of that year.
H&V News 26th Sept 2008 more >>
New Energy Focus 26th Sept 2008 more >>
Tesco has applied to Colchester Council for permission to install a combined heat and power (CHP) unit in a bid to provide a sustainable method of powering its store in Church Road, Tiptree.
North Essex Gazette 26th Sept 2008 more >>
Lake District Hotel
Overwater Hall at Ireby near Bassenthwaite Lake has been granted planning permission to erect a wind turbine in the grounds, which will provide all the electricity for its fridge freezers and lighting.
Cumberland News 26th Sept 2008 more >>
Co-op Solar Scheme
Phase two of the Co-op’s scheme will see 60 schools receiving solar panels with the rest of the money being used to pilot three additional renewable technologies - wind turbines, biomass boilers and ground source heat pumps. The Co-operative is calling on other businesses to follow its lead by setting up similar schemes.
Dorset Echo 26th September 2008 more >>
Clean Tech 100
Guardian/Library House List of the tgop 100 clean technology companies.
Guardian 18th Sept 2008 more >>
According to the analysts Library House, venture capital investment in European cleantech companies went from £407m in 2006 to £805m last year. Ben Goldsmith of WHEB Ventures, an investment firm specialising in environmental businesses, says that globally the figures are even more impressive: “around $850m in 2004 against $6bn in 2007”.
Guardian 18th Sept 2008 more >>
Green Spaces 2008
Loch Ossian Hostel: A hostel that leaves no footprint? This one has “bat-friendly” paint, a wind turbine, water filtration and compost toilets.
Times 13th Sept 2008 more >>