week ending 25 October 2013
Good Energy Bond Issue
Good Energy says “strong investor confidence” helped the green electricity company reach its £15m corporate bond issue target three weeks ahead of schedule. The firm’s unlisted bond issue, the first by an AIM-listed company, was launched on October 2 to finance expansion to Good Energy’s wind and solar energy portfolio. Good Energy intends to build 110MW of new renewable energy capacity by 2016 from a development portfolio of around 200MW of new solar capacity and 35MW of onshore wind projects. In related news, UK-based social enterprise and co-operative 5YJ has announced the launch of a share issuance aimed at raising £150,000 to develop solar energy projects.
Business Green 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Wiltshire-based renewable energy company Good Energy has submitted a planning application for a 49.9MW solar farm to be built on a former RAF site in Norfolk. The site comprises 91 hectares of contaminated land that is unusable for agriculture. Good Energy has submitted a planning application to North Norfolk District Council for the plant on land belonging to the Raynham Estate, near Fakenham, Norfolk.
Solar Portal 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Lynn News 25th Oct 2013 more >>
A college is opening its doors to other schools and colleges to demonstrate how they can benefit from renewable energy. John Ferneley College, in Melton, worked with Myriad Solar PV in nearby Burrough on the Hill on a solar power system that drastically cut its demand for electricity from the National Grid. The college is to host an open day for Myriad on Thursday to showcase the project.
Leicester Mercury 25th Oct 2013 more >>
A NORTH-EAST solar panel maker is powering a football team to glory. Romag, of Leadgate, near Consett, County Durham, has made 200 solar panels for Championship side Doncaster Rovers’ Keepmoat Stadium. Bosses expect the 50KW system to save the club £3,000 in its first year, and the deal means Rovers are the first football league club to fit solar panels on their stadium.
Northern Echo 25th Oct 2013 more >>
More than 800MW of renewable heat has been installed in the past two years thanks to government funding, but despite encouraging growth across the sector the fledgling industry remains concerned installation rates are failing to match the government’s initial expectations.
Business Green 25th Oct 2013 more >>
The government is urging people to use their heating this winter as part of its plan to prevent some of the thousands of avoidable deaths that occur each year due to the cold weather. The official cold weather plan for England says people should keep their homes warm, with living room temperatures of 21C (70F) and bedrooms and the rest of the house heated to 18C (65F). It says temperatures above this “may waste money” but below this “may risk your health”. If people are unable to afford to heat all their rooms, they should heat their living room during the day and bedrooms just before going to bed. The plan was published by Public Health England (PHE) in collaboration with the Department of Health, NHS England and the Local Government Association (LGA). It says there are “too many avoidable deaths each winter”, with just over 24,000 each year in England and Wales. The “causes are complex, interlinked with fuel poverty, poor housing and health inequalities, as well as circulating infectious diseases, particularly flu and norovirus, and the extent of snow and ice,” it added.
Guardian 25th Oct 2013 more >>
The UK is second only to Estonia among European countries for the number of people struggling to pay their energy bills, according to campaigners. Members of fuel poverty alliance Energy Bill Revolution have written to Prime Minister David Cameron demanding that party leaders act on the “national scandal” of cold homes.
Telegraph 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Fuel poverty campaigners have written to Prime Minister David Cameron demanding cross-party action on the “national crisis” of cold homes.
BBC 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Business Green 25th Oct 2013 more >>
The number of people seeking debt advice about their energy bills has surged following recent announcements of price rises. Citizens Advice has reported a 55pc increase in the number of people seeking online advice about their energy bills following the first price alert from supplier SSE on October 10.
Telegraph 24th Oct 2013 more >>
As the Government have announced a review into so called green energy taxes and the clearest indication that some may be cut, the National Insulation Association (NIA) highlights that green energy schemes such as the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) are key to lowering domestic energy bills and that the savings can far exceed the associated costs. The Energy Company Obligation (ECO), which provides free and subsidised energy efficiency measures, adds just £47 a year to the average energy bill. The NIA advised: “The savings available to householders through installing energy efficiency measures can far outweigh this cost with cavity wall and loft insulation saving around £320 per year and solid wall and loft Insulation around £670 per year.
National Insulation Association 24th Oct 2013 more >>
Boreholes up to two miles (3.2km) deep will be drilled in Manchester to use a thermal spring to heat homes. Proposals by GT Energy for the exploratory drilling in the Ardwick area have been approved by the council. If the two boreholes are successful, further plans will be submitted to create a network of underground pipes taking heat to houses. GT Energy says it will reduce energy costs for 6,000 homes and businesses. The initial boreholes will be installed at the junction of Devonshire Street and Coverdale Crescent.
BBC 24th October 2013 more >>
Renewable Energy Focus 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Utility Week 25th Oct 2013 more >>
A director at the UK’s leading solar power generator Lightsource Renewable Energy has written to Prime Minister David Cameron describing how the UK PV sector could match the output of the planned nuclear power station at Hinkley within just two years. Operations Director Mark Turner says the nation’s solar industry has the capability to deliver the same energy production than Hinkley Point C within 24 months and at comparable cost. In his letter, he describes how solar power will not be the entire solution “but if we supported its deployment then within a couple of years we could have 10% of the UK’s energy mix completely free from the vagaries of the global fossil fuel markets”.
Click Green 24th Oct 2013 more >>
Solar Portal 25th Oct 2013 more >>
Just two weeks ago, energy minster Greg Barker laid down a crystal clear challenge to the solar PV sector. The only way to maximise solar’s contribution to the 2020 renewables target would be to “squeeze out subsidy” and to “compete like-for-like with fossil fuels”, he said. That’s some challenge, but it is one that is not being extended to any other low carbon technology. Certainly not to nuclear. The contrast between the minister’s uncompromising message to our industry on 8 October and the Hinkley Point C deal announced by DECC this week could not be any clearer.The very suggestion from energy secretary Ed Davey in the House of Commons on Monday, that the nuclear price “is competitive with projected costs for other plants commissioning in the 2020s”, is frankly absurd. Indeed it is so absurd that I had to check and double-check Hansard to make sure that that was really what his speech writers at DECC had written for him. Nuclear industry claims that this deal makes its technology the “cheapest” low carbon energy technology are even more outrageous, confusing, as they do, the headline £92.50/MWh CPI-linked 2023 nuclear strike price with next year’s draft renewables strike prices. The correct comparison is with projected costs for renewables projects completing in 2023 and beyond not in just six months’ time. Such is the projected pace of cost reduction in the solar PV sector that the Solar Trade Association (STA) has been able to ask for a strike price of £91 in 2018. It is inconceivable in my view that DECC will now set a higher solar strike price than £91 in 2018. So even if we were to leave out the multi-billion loan guarantees and the other sweeteners required for new nuclear, solar PV will be beating nuclear on strike price alone by 2018, some five years before Hinkley Point C is due to be completed. By 2019, the Solar Trade Association predicts that the industry will require a strike price of £86, falling year on year thereafter, paid over 15 not 35 years and with no nuclear-style small print permitting a possible increase in strike price once those terms are set.
Solar Portal 24th Oct 2013 more >>
Renew 21st Oct 2013 more >>
Abundance Generation has revealed its latest renewable energy crowdfunding initiative has proved its most successful to date, with over £400,000 of debentures purchased in less than a month. The company confirmed the SunShare Community Nottingham project, which is seeking to refinance 572 kWp of existing roof-mounted solar panels in Nottingham, has seen investment in the scheme run at more than double the rate enjoyed by previous schemes.
Business Green 24th Oct 2013 more >>
The Government has awarded a share of £5 million to get more renewable heating in the homes of tenants. A total of 57 landlords have won the cash, which will be used to install a range of renewable heating kit such as air and ground source heat pumps, solar thermal and biomass boilers in social homes.
Energy Live News 24th Oct 2013 more >>
New Forest Solar
Solar panels were fitted to the Gore Grange care home in New Milton run by New Forest District Council and the council have said they will share any savings between residents in all 13 of their older persons’ accommodation who are paying a service charge. The 88 solar panels were fitted in August, costing the council £30,000, but the council is expecting it to bring savings of more than £48,000 in 20 years. The council has also installed solar panels at Lymington Health and Lesiure and they plan to fit them to Totton Health and Leisure next summer.
Southern Daily Echo 23rd Oct 2013 more >>
South Wales Solar Farm
WORK on the largest solar park on a brownfield site in Wales is close to completion. The £15 million Baglan Bay scheme comprises 20,000 photovoltaic panels and will generate the equivalent electricity used by 1,200 households, according to site owners St Modwen.
South Wales Evening Post 23rd Oct 2013 more >>
Larkfleet Group is aiming to help tackle global warming and generate carbon-free electricity with an experimental solar power system being installed alongside its headquarters in Falcon Way, Bourne. The solar steam system was delivered this week on three huge trucks is currently being installed. The system consists of panels which focus the sun’s rays onto metal tubes filled with water. This heat can be harnessed to heat water or to produce steam used to drive an electric generator. The panels are mounted on a rig which will rotate to track the movement of the sun.
Stamford Mercury 22nd Oct 2013 more >>
Give community wind power the same EMR terms as Hinkley C!
Ecologist 22nd Oct 2013 more >>
David Toke’s Blog 24th Oct 2013 more >>
GREATER public control of energy assets would not result in greater community ownership, a leading charity has warned. Nicholas Gubbins, chief executive of Community Energy Scotland (CES) this week warned that state control of UK energy would not necessarily be good for communities that want to benefit from their own energy projects. Instead, he said community energy projects, which currently face a range of obstacles and struggle to get off the ground, need more government support.
Third Force News 17th Oct 2013 more >>
Critics of the coalition’s energy-saving Green Deal are “mad”, according to the head of the body financing the programme. Only 57 households have had new boilers, loft insulation or other energy saving measures installed since the scheme’s launch in January, despite ministers’ hopes that up to 10,000 would have done so by the end of this year. Cutting household energy use is a priority for ministers who see it as one way to prevent a capacity crunch in the next decade – alongside new generation such as nuclear power stations. But the Labour party has condemned the Green Deal as a waste of money and vowed to replace it if it wins office in 2015. One operator, Carillion, has blamed the slow progress for having to restructure its energy services business, at a cost of £40m. But it is far too early to make such judgments, said Mark Bayley, chief executive of the Green Deal Financing Company. “What astonishes me is how, six months since we became fully operational from April, people are rushing to judgment about the scheme. It’s just mad.” “It’s about people’s perceptions,” said Jenny Holland of the Association for the Conservation of Energy, which represents several Green Deal providers. The scheme involved a “fiendishly complicated customer journey” and “upfront customer contributions end up being unattractively high for a lot of would-be consumers”, she added.
FT 21st Oct 2013 more >>
THE Green Deal, the government’s flagship home energy-saving scheme, which was meant to create up to 60,000 jobs by 2015, has instead caused up to 7,000 redundancies, with more likely to follow. The Green Deal scheme and the energy company obligation (Eco) were designed to make millions of homes cosier and cheaper to heat by helping householders install insulation and other energy-saving measures. David Cameron pledged in February that they would help make Britain “the most energy-efficient country in Europe”. The government aimed to upgrade 10,000 homes by next year and 14m by 2020. However, so few householders have taken up the scheme that hardly any of the promised jobs have emerged.
Times 20th Oct 2013 more >>
The number of PV installations has grown dramatically around the world, and due to the value of equipment in solar installations, they’ve become the target of theft. The good news is there are many ways to deter theft and insure against it.
Solar Novus 21st Oct 2013 more >>
The SNP has waded into the debate about the future of the Westminster government’s “green levies”, pledging to shift the cost of energy efficiency schemes onto general taxation if the country votes for independence in next year’s referendum.
Business Green 21st Oct 2013 more >>
Britain now has 102 megawatts of small wind capacity, comprising over 23,000 turbines. Many of them are very small, under 1.5 kW. These figures may be compared with about 4,000 large turbines in onshore wind farms, providing 6,500 MW of capacity. The majority of these smaller wind turbines are installed on farms (64%) and domestic rural properties (22%), so small and medium wind power plays a significant role in the rural economy.
NFU 21st Oct 2013 more >>
A 900kW Enercon E-44 wind turbine is being installed at G b Sg rabhal, on the most north westerly point of the Isle of Barra and early indications are that the wind resource will make this one of the most productive 900kW turbine in Western Europe.
Stornoway Gazette 21st Oct 2013 more >>
A £6m solar energy research centre launched by Swansea University will help to drive economic growth in Wales by furthering science and innovation expertise, according to business minister Edwina Hart. Professor James Durrant from Imperial College London has been appointed as the S r Cymru Solar Energy Research chairman at Swansea University and will lead a new Solar Futures Laboratory.
Insider Media 21st Oct 2013 more >>
Elgin Energy EsCo has received the green light from Carmarthenshire Council to develop a solar farm in Tycroes. The 70-acre site, at Clawdd Du farm, Tycroes, will generate enough power for 3,600 houses each year. Elgin, which is leasing the land from the landowner, will install and maintain the 48,000 panels for a period of 25 years. The energy generated will be distributed back to the National Grid.
Insider Media 21st Oct 2013 more >>
In 2008 Eric Pickles was chairman of the Conservative Party. In that role, he championed a wholesale conversion of the party’s environmental image, under the slogan “Vote Blue, Go Green”. Now as Communities Secretary he is presiding over a Department that seems determined to undermine a whole range of sustainable energy measures – including seeking to repeal a key Act of Parliament that he was largely instrumental in placing upon the statute book. Perversely this seems to be in direct defiance of the Prime Minister. Earlier this year David Cameron made a much-publicised seminal speech at the Royal Society. He was unequivocal. He pledged to make Britain the “most energy-efficient country in Europe.” He stated: “We are in a global race. And the countries that succeed in that race are those that are the greenest and the most energy efficient.” The Planning and Energy Act provides local authorities with the ability to set specific carbon, renewable energy and energy efficiency targets for new build properties (the so-called ‘Merton Rule’). It also extends local authorities’ power to specify higher standards of energy efficiency and lower carbon energy production than required as the minimum under the building regulations.
ACE 14th Oct 2013 more >>