week ending 27 August 2010
The UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is launching a competition for £7 million for research into solar nanotechnology.
Renewable Energy Focus 27th Aug 2010 more >>
The Engineer 27th Aug 2010 more >>
Cabling company Nexans has highlighted the importance of developing “smarter grids” in order to better manage networks to help face new needs such as the deployment of renewable energy.
New Energy Focus 27th Aug 2010 more >>
The UK’s emerging anaerobic digestion (AD) industry was thrust into the limelight this week after two major new projects that promise to demonstrate the viability of the waste-to-energy technology were unveiled. First up, energy firm Farmgen broke ground on the first in a wave of anaerobic digestion plants, designed to provide farmers with an additional revenue stream from “energy farming”. Farmgen said that it also plans to build a second £2.5m plant in Silloth, Cumbria later this year and is preparing planning applications for sites in Lancashire and Staffordshire.
Business Green 27th Aug 2010 more >>
New Energy Focus 25th Aug 2010 more >>
A PIONEERING “sun park” planned for land near Louth could be the first of its kind in the country. The Grimsby Telegraph can reveal plans have been submitted for Britain’s first solar park at Fen Farm, Conisholme, on land next to the 20-turbine wind farm. Energy company Ecotricity – which has also submitted a separate application for a further five wind turbines – wants to make renewable energy using sunlight. The planned solar park will have a capacity of 1MW of electricity – enough to power about 500 homes.
Grimsby Telegraph 26th Aug 2010 more >>
PV Tech 27th Aug 2010 more >>
The mood will most likely be bright when the second Solar Flair conference swings into County Durham’s Lumley Castle on December 8 and 9.
Newcastle Journal 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Solar South West
There are a rash of would be “solar park” developers contacting farmers and landowners here in the South West to see if they will sign up to option agreements so that they can develop field- scale parks, similar to those which have already been developed in Spain and Germany where FITs have existed for a number of years. Developers are generally looking for 25- to 30-acre blocks of flat or south-facing land and are willing to pay rents of up to £2,000 per acre per annum, which is significantly more profitable for farmers than growing corn. Developing solar parks will undoubtedly be controversial and minimising the environmental impact of these developments will be one of the key issues during the planning process. But a park covering 25 to 30 acres should produce enough energy to power approximately 1,500 average-sized houses.
This is Somerset 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Some of the UK’s best known firms are queuing up to bolster their understanding of the expanding green building sector by enrolling employees on the industry’s first accredited online training course.
The UK Green Building Council (GBC) will officially launch a foundation phase of the Sustainability Training and Education Programme (STEP) on September 6, and the organisation is hoping to initially enroll over 100 students on the course.
Business Green 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Clarence House goes solar
The Prince of Wales was granted permission yesterday to install dozens of solar panels on his home at Clarence House in the latest move to cut his carbon footprint. The 32 solar photovoltaic panels, which produce electricity, can now be installed on the south-east roof of the central London residence, which has been a home to royalty for 170 years
Scotsman 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Daily Mail 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Independent 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Evening Standard 25th Aug 2010 more >>
24 Dash 26th Aug 2010 more >>
Low Carbon Economy 27th Aug 2010 more >>
Latest figures have shown that more solar panels have been installed this month than ever before as record numbers of homeowners in the UK take advantage of the Government’s renewable energy scheme. According to energy regulator Ofgem, 2,257 homes in the country have had solar panels fitted so far in August. The figure represents a significant increase from the 1,700 seen in July, and the 1,400 homes fitted in June. Ofgem said 6,688 properties had been fitted with solar panels since April. The panels are capable of generating more that 16MW of power.
New Civil Engineer 26th Aug 2010 more >>
24 Dash 25th August 2010 more >>
Setting up a green business
A seminar on 20 September at BRE in Watford will explain the business, financial and technical issues to be considered when setting up a renewable energy installation business. With green technology firmly in the spotlight and the creation of ‘green jobs’ an increasingly important tool for improving the economy, there are growing opportunities for businesses that install the technologies needed to generate solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy in buildings.
ADF Online 25th Aug 2010 more >>
The ‘Green Deal’ has been making headlines for months. High profile Conservatives, including David Cameron and Grant Shapps, have talked about homeowners being entitled to spend up to £6,500 improving the energy efficiency of their home. Repayment will be from savings in future energy bills – but with the homeowner still seeing an overall saving. Crucially, if the property is sold, the repayment will continue to be made through the energy bills by the new owner.
24 Dash 25th Aug 2010 more >>
SummitSkills is reminding building services engineering employers in England that the deadline is looming for access to potential funding of half the cost of training related to environmental technologies. The Joint Investment Programme brings together public and private investment to support skills development in areas key to economic recovery and future growth. This means employers in England could get ring-fenced funding to buy the skills they want, with the training provider they choose. Level 3 qualifications covered by the funding include: solar thermal; heat pump; solar photovoltaic; and water recycling systems. Each qualification provides specific training to develop a competence standard matching that required for the Microgeneration Certification Scheme.
Heating & Ventilating.net 25th Aug 2010 more >>
Heat Pumps in Parliament
The Micropower Council held a special renewable green energy event at the Houses of Parliament last month. In addition to 30 Peers and MPs, including Greg Barker MP, the Minister of State for Climate Change, the demonstration was attended by senior Civil Servants and interested parties, with over 170 guests able to talk directly to Micropower Council members. The event was held to demonstrate how air source heat pumps have quickly established themselves as one of the most efficient and effective low carbon alternatives to gas and oil heating. In addition, over the past two years, live winter trials have been conducted to confirm how effective air source heat pumps can be throughout a British winter.
Able Skills 25th Aug 2010 more >>
British Gas has unveiled a new service that will allow households to install solar panels at no up-front cost. Its mySolar Energy pilot scheme provides customers with the choice to either pay for a solar panel themselves or take advantage of an offer from the company that involves no up-front cost. Under the terms of the deal, customers taking up the free panel will effectively rent part of their roof space to British Gas, meaning they can use the energy generated by the solar panel, but British Gas keeps the revenue generated through the feed-in tariff scheme. The deal will only be open to British Gas customers and will initially be limited to 1,500 installations. Alternatively, households can take advantage of a two-year, zero per cent APR finance deal and pay for the panels and installation themselves, allowing them to keep payments received through the feed-in tariff scheme which can reach up to £1,000 a year.
Business Green 25th Aug 2010 more >>
As many as half of Britain’s homes could earn around £600 a year from roof top solar panels with some earning as much as £1000, according to energy supplier, British Gas. Research carried out by the company suggests that over 12 million households have roofs that could benefit from solar panel installations which would produce enough electricity for up to half their household needs.
Build.co.uk 25th Aug 2010 more >>
Eaga teams up with HomeSun
A company seeking to roll out solar panels to 100,000 homes over the next three years has named Newcastle-based services provider Eaga Renewables as its installation partner.The partnership - which is headed by free-energy firm HomeSun - aims to provide solar panels free-of-charge to households with “optimally-sited and sized roofs”
New Energy Focus 24th Aug 2010 more >>
Hydrogen powered councils
A SHEFFIELD company that specialises in developing power systems using hydrogen as a source of green energy, has signed a deal to run trials with Sheffield City Council and the London Borough of Camden. ITM Power will be running on site trials with the two councils using a transportable high pressure hydrogen refuelling unit and Ford Transit vans,
Sheffield Star 24th Aug 2010 more >>
A chain of five Ecodan air source heat pumps is supplying continuous, controllable underfloor heating to a new 48-bed rehabilitation centre in Middlesbrough. The 14.5kW Ecodan units will provide 45 per cent of the heat-load for the newly built centre, which provides self-contained flats and en-suite rooms for clients with various supported housing needs.
Plumbing Park 24th August 2010 more >>
North East Generation
Redcar and Cleveland has already installed a number of solar panels on schools and buildings across the borough and plans to take full advantage of the extra revenue available. “This will have a significant impact,” Wendi added, “particularly where a building such as a school is closed over the summer. The PV cells can generate away merrily and we will be able to sell that electricity back to the grid.” Middlesbrough Council is installing two medium-sized wind turbines and solar photovoltaic systems as part of the EcoEasterside low carbon grant funded scheme.
Evening Gazette 24th August 2010 more >>
Construction work is finally beginning on the UK’s first Green Energy Training Centre on Merseyside, which is aiming to boost the number of skilled contractors qualified to install microgeneration technologies. Builders will this week start converting a warehouse owned by renewable technology manufacturer Stiebel Eltron into the new £280,000 Green Energy Training Centre (GETC). Government and industry-accredited training courses are expected to start in November.
Business Green 24th Aug 2010 more >>
Liverpool Daily Post 25th Aug 2010 more >>
Senior policy advisors in the renewables industry have claimed the Treasury is to blame for the hold-up on an announcement on the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), while it grapples with how the scheme will be financed.
New Energy Focus 24th Aug 2010 more >>
Solar and Heat Pump on Grade II listed house
When Ian and Becky moved to Yorkshire to start a new life, they wanted their new home to be as environmentally-friendly as possible. So heating and hot water from a Dimplex heat pump and solar thermal water heating system were a natural choice to cut the building’s carbon footprint. The house is a large old Grade II listed farmhouse.
Plumbing Park 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
Aldi goes green
National architects practice, The Harris Partnership have completed a 17,500 sq. ft Aldi store in Bedford that boasts renewable energy benefits. The overall design treatment is a development of the distinctive blue-print that the majority of Aldi stores possess across the UK, but new elements include renewable energy in the form of Solar Panels on the roof, creating electricity and recovery of the heat normally lost within the refrigeration, recycled to heat the Store. Solar Shading has also been introduced to prevent the building from overheating from the sun.
ADF Online 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
Small-scale could be big
You’re slowly paying off a mortgage on your new home and rumour has it you could make a few pennies by fitting it with new devices to generate clean energy. You look into it, but no one seems to be able to tell you just how much that solar panel or ground source heat pump will really provide, and what sort of payback time to expect. Confused, you decide to put your plans on hold for a few years and, in the meantime, your enthusiasm begins to ebb It’s an all too common story. And it’s a frustrating one, too. Because there’s no doubt that the UK has massive potential for microgeneration. Initial research by the Department for Energy and Climate Change suggests that up to nine million units could be installed by 2030, including around four million PV (photovoltaic) installations, and 2.5 million each of ground source heat pumps and micro combined heat and power (mCHP) plants.
Green bang 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
The government’s upcoming Energy Security and Green Economy bill must include measures to help small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) cut carbon emissions, according to a new report from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).
Business Green 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
North Uist Funding Cut
Residents of Sollas in North Uist must return to the drawing board after being told that their renewable energy project cannot be taken forward for funding. The community has fallen foul of Scottish Government spending cuts which will see many other small-scale renewable energy proposals across the Outer Hebrides also left high and dry. The Community and Renewable Energy Scheme (Cares), administered by Community Energy Scotland (CES), was due to run until 2011, but has been abruptly closed to new applicants. This effectively ends two years of work by the committee of Taigh Sgire Sollas, who were in the process of applying for a 90% grant towards a renewable energy scheme and insulation for the former Dunskellar School, now run by residents as a community centre.
Press & Journal 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
The Wessex Group of companies, based in Shaftesbury, has now launched a new company called Wessex Renewable Energy. Having successfully traded for nearly 50 yearsin electrical, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and plumbing systems Wessex has stepped up to support the anticipated demand from both businesses and residential customers for greener and cheaper alternatives for energy.
Wiltshire Business 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
The Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy 2011 is now seeking entries from schools who are leading the way in sustainability. The Ashden is looking for schools who are encouraging children to save energy and care for the environment. School applicants must ensure that sustainable energy has been a key part of the practice and culture of their school for at least a year and that it includes behaviour changes that save energy, curriculum developments and technical measures such as installation of energy efficiency and/or renewable energy technology. The school must also have both the capacity and the commitment to make sustainable energy more widespread.
Scholastic 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
Members of a church are turning to the heavens to boost their power supplies. The Sacred Heart Church in St Ives (Cambridge) has applied to install solar panels on the roof of the hall, which is adjacent to the main church building.
News & Crier 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
IT’s renewable, environmentally friendly and never in short supply. So it’s perhaps fitting that Oxford Sewage Works will soon be largely running on “poo power” as part of a five-year, £27.7m project. Thames Water estimates the new technology – which will harness the energy from every toilet flush across the city by converting human waste into electricity – will save the Grenoble Road plant £800,000 a year on energy bills. It comes six months after British Gas announced a scheme at Didcot Sewage Works to convert the town’s waste into a power source for the nation’s boilers and cookers.
Oxford Mail 21st Aug 2010 more >>
Solar Test Rig
A COUNCILLOR has been allowed to install an experimental solar power rig in his back garden, despite it being branded “ugly” by fellow council members. Ian Bickerton (LD, Leckhampton) is working with Bristol University to try to devise a way of reducing the cost of solar power to the domestic market. The newly-elected member of Cheltenham Borough Council has now won permission to build a seven metre high test rig in his back garden in Brizen Lane.
This is Gloucestershire 21st Aug 2010 more >>
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg officially opened a major solar farm on the roof of a University of Sheffield building today (Friday 20 August 2010), as part of a £120,000 investment hoped to help lead the way in photovoltaic research and boost our knowledge of renewable energy.
Sheffield University 20th Aug 2010 more >>
Sheffield Star 23rd Aug 2010 more >>
Connecting Industry 24th Aug 2010 more >>
Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has outlined plans for the government’s Green Deal, claiming that it has “the potential to unlock tens of billions of private sector spending”. Speaking at the launch of a new renewable energy support project, Mr Clegg said that the government is aiming to initiate a “quiet green revolution”. The Green Deal is intended to offer households the chance to make energy efficient improvements without the upfront cost. It believes that up to 14 million homes could be insulated through the project, which should be up and running by 2012.
Low Carbon Economy 20th Aug 2010 more >>
THIS is the first glimpse of what Crawley’s newest neighbourhood could look like. The first designs for Kilnwood Vale, soon to be the town’s 14th housing area, have been released as developers submit their planning application to the council. There are also plans for Kilnwood Vale to have a primary school, nursing home, health centre and, possibly, a renewable energy centre to supply heating and power.
This is Sussex 20th Aug 2010 more >>
Copper for solar thermal
A new publication from the UK Copper Board provides an introduction to the design and installation of copper solar thermal systems. With the construction industry gearing up to include renewable energy systems on new developments, and homeowners choosing to implement green energy solutions, there is an opportunity for professional plumbers to branch out.
Heating & Plumbing Monthly 20th Aug 2010 more >>
Green jobs boom
A survey launched in the south west of England indicates that ‘green energy’ jobs could be the key to leading the west country out of the current economic downturn. The survey of over 200 businesses shows that in the last two years, despite the recession, the number of people employed in the renewable energy sector grew to over 5,000 – a 78% increase.
Heating & Plumbing Monthly 20th Aug 2010 more >>
One of the most interesting entrants into the photovoltaic field, however, is a cell that copies very closely the mechanisms of photosynthesis. Based on cheap materials and manufacturable through simple processes, it is set to make a big impact into the most neglected of global energy markets, the developing world.
Engineer 16th Aug 2010 more >>