week ending 8 April 2011
Solar industry will grind to a halt
Changes to the Feed-in Tariff scheme (FITs) announced earlier in the year will bring the solar industry to a “grinding halt”, according to the Renewable Energy Association (REA). The government announced in March the tariff levels for any solar installation with a generation capacity of over 50kW will be slashed, to much anger from the solar industry, in an attempt to deal with what it perceives to be the threat posed by “super-size” solar farms.
Low Carbon Economy 8th April 2011 more >>
Following recent proposals from the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to dramatically reduce the tariff paid to those with solar PV (photovoltaic) energy schemes generating more than 50 kW, power experts at IMS Research are questioning the viability and future of solar energy in the UK.
Renewable Energy Focus 8th April 2011 more >>
Government moves to clamp down on financial support for solar power is putting the industry’s growth at risk, the South West’s regional green energy agency has warned.
Planning Resource 7th April 2011 more >>
General Electric Co made a big push in solar power, saying it will invest $600 million to build a new factory as it pursues what it thinks could be an up to $3 billion business by 2015. The largest U.S. conglomerate, which over the last decade has made itself a leader in renewable energy, said it has designed a thin-film solar panel that converts sunlight to electricity more efficiently than rival products today.
Reuters 7th April 2011 more >>
The Technology Strategy Board and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council has awarded £1.4million to a new national programme established to develop highly efficient, multi junction organic solar cells. A consortium, which includes The University of Warwick, Imperial College London, Kurt Lesker, Asylum Research, New World Solar and Molecular Solar, will work together to develop the next generation of solar energy harvesting technology.
New Electronics 7th April 2011 more >>
North Wales Contractor
North Wales based contractor AT Green is teaming up with renewable products manufacturer Stiebel Eltron to explore opportunities for solar installations across the region. AT Green is targeting green energy as a growth sector, having received industry accreditation to install solar PV systems. The company’s first installation project was at its headquarters, which has been fitted with six 2.2kW solar PV panels.
Heating & Ventilating,net 7th April 2011 more >>
FARMERS in Scotland who are considering investing in renewable energy have been reminded that applications for the Communities and Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES) Loan Fund close on April 30.
Farmers Guardian 7th April 2011 more >>
A CALDERDALE school is turning to solar power. Withenfields Primary School in Southowram has installed 50 square feet of solar panels on its roofing.
Huddersfield Examiner 7th April 2011 more >>
A WIND turbine and solar panels have been officially turned on as the Energy Skills Centre’s centrepiece at Bridgwater College. The roof-top renewable devices feature as part of an energy classroom. Students can now undertake energy experiments on the special teaching roof using the 15m tall turbine and 34 solar thermal panels. EDF Energy Green Fund gave £30,000 to the £85,000 renewable energy project.
This is Somerset 7th April 2011 more >>
The ODA is looking for a design and build framework agreement to provide photovoltaic (PV) panel installations over a four year period. It is looking to have 616 m of PV panels installed on the roof of the main press centre and 2,500 m of PV panels on the roof of the multi-storey car park, as well as on other buildings and open spaces subsequently considered suitable.
Construction Index 7th April 2011 more >>
South Norfolk goes Solar
A Norfolk housing association is investing more than £7m in solar-powered energy for 1,000 of its 4,600 homes. Saffron Housing Trust will install photo-voltaic (PV) panels on the roofs of the properties in south Norfolk. The association estimates tenants with an average electricity bill could save £125 a year. Not all homes will be eligible and one of the main criteria for the free solar panels will be a south facing property.
BBC 6th April 2011 more >>
CHAMPIONSHIP football club Barnsley is set to become the first professional outfit in the country to be powered by solar energy. Work will start next month installing photovoltaic panels on the roofs of two stands and the external wall of the south stand at its Oakwell ground - enough to provide energy for about 140 homes.
Business Desk 6th April 2011 more >>
Government cancels flagship solar project
The government has cancelled its own flagship solar energy project because the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (DECC) proposed cuts to solar feed-in tariff incentives will make the scheme unviable. That is the charge from “stakeholders” who contributed to a Whitehall project to assess the potential for fitting solar panels across the government estate, following a workshop on the topic at the Cabinet Office last November.
Business Green 6th April 2011 more >>
More efficient land use could see England produce enough biomass to meet around four per cent of current UK electricity demand without affecting environmental sustainability or food production. That is the conclusion of a major new study funded by the UK Energy Research Centre examining the potential of planting short rotation energy crops on unused agricultural land.
Business Green 6th April 2011 more >>
The UK’s first hydrodynamic screw generator, modeled on the ancient ‘Archimedes Screw’, is providing power for the River Dart Country Park near Ashburton in Devon. With no adverse affect on the river’s protected and diverse wildlife, the renewable energy generated by this innovative installation is sufficient to power the entire site for more than eight months of the year, even generating excess to export back to the electricity grid when the river is in full flow.
Edie 5th April 2011 more >>
A £12 million contract to build replacement schools on the sites of existing primary schools near Durham has been won by Sir Robert McAlpine. There will be a host of sustainability features at the schools, including earth tubes, solar water heating, photovoltaic panels and bio mass boilers.
H&V News 5th April 2011 more >>
East Midlands Boost
A firm which designs energy-saving heating systems says soaring demand should see it double its workforce to 45 over the next three years. Underfloor Warehouse, of Blaby, says Government incentives are leading to a surge in householders and businesses looking to invest in green energy systems such as solar panels. Bosses are predicting turnover will more than treble from £6.3 million this year to £20 million by the end of 2013.
East Midland Business 5th April 2011 more >>
The chilling effect of the coalition’s proposed cuts to feed-in tariff incentives on planned solar projects with 50kW capacity was hammered home last week with the release of new data suggesting that virtually no mid-sized installations will go ahead if the incentives are slashed as planned.
Business Green 4th April 2011 more >>
Gehrlicher Solar is continuing its international expansion with its new subsidiary based in the United Kingdom. Located in Birmingham, England, Gehrlicher Solar UK will focus on the sale of photovoltaic components throughout the UK, which was previously done with the cooperation of selected partners in Great Britain. Jens Schnoor, head of the components and systems division, will act as managing director for the new company.
PV Tech 4th April 2011 more >>
Solar Farm Opposition
RESIDENTS living next to a field earmarked for development as a site for renewable energy say they are outraged at the multi-million pound plans. A total of 14,000 solar panels could be built on a 13.8-acre site at Hazel Farm, Langstone, costing £6.25 million to install, we revealed on Saturday. A second solar farm is planned for land at Michaelstone-y-Fedw.
South Wales Argus 4th April 2011 more >>
INNOVATIVE plans for a solar energy farm in Christchurch have been rejected by Christchurch Borough Council. Concerns over harm to the green belt led to officers refusing the application by Eco Sustainable Solutions to build the solar energy farm on 30 acres of land next to the company’s Chapel Lane site.
Daily Echo 4th April 2011 more >>
OVER 1,000 Newport homes could be powered by two multi-million pound solar energy farms planned for the outskirts of the city. The projects, in Langstone and Michael-y-Fedw, would see 23,000 solar photovoltaic energy panels placed on farmland generating 4.5 megawatts of electricity a year.
South Wales Argus 3rd April 2011 more >>
Snatching Defeat from Victory
UP to 90,000 potential jobs have been jeopardised by the Government’s proposed cut in breaks for the UK’s solar power industry. Greg Barker, Minister for Climate Change, has proposed cutting the “feed-in tariff” for medium-sized solar developments by 72 per cent. Small solar projects face a small cut in subsidies.
Express 3rd April 2011 more >>
New solar panels at Dulverton Middle School were switched on this week. This is the school’s latest green achievement since installing a composter to recycle all its food waste. The new solar panels are estimated to reduce the school’s carbon footprint by an estimated 4.29 tonnes a year.
Somerset Country Gazette 2nd April 2011 more >>