Harris Community Wind
Congratulations are in order for the movers and shakers on the North Harris Trust who announced this week that they had finally reached an agreement to build a three turbine wind farm at Monan about five miles north of the island’s capital Tarbert. As the estimable trust chair Calum MacKay, declared: “We set out in 2003 to develop the Monan site. Directors have worked doggedly to find a way through the many set-backs thrown their way. After over ten years, it looks as though this year we will see turbines on the site. This project will bring much-needed new income to the Trust and the local community.”
Herald 7th Feb 2014 read more »
Larne Wind Co-operative
A community-owned wind energy project – the first of its kind in Northern Ireland – has generated its first units of electricity this week. Drumlin Wind Energy Co-operative launched the scheme in June 2012 with a public share offer and raised £2.7m, enough to build four 250KW single wind turbines across four sites in Northern Ireland, including one in the Larne area, The innovative model allows local people to take direct ownership of renewable energy, deriving both financial and environmental benefits from the scheme.
Larne Times 7th Feb 2014 read more »
Plane and train maker Bombardier has had plans for a 3.8MW solar farm at one of its manufacturing plants in Belfast approved by the environment minister for Northern Ireland, Mark Durkan. The five hectare rooftop PV power station will produce the equivalent to the power consumed by 300 homes and will be sited at Bombardier’s Airport Road West wing manufacturing and assembly facility.
Solar Portal 7th Feb 2014 read more »
The Roupell Park estate in Brixton, south London, is home to (along with around 3,000 people) two community renewable energy schemes. One is a multi-million pound combined heat and power (CHP) system which began burning both EU and council money in 2004, yet remains non-operational 10 years on. The other is 52kWp of roof-top solar panels part-owned by the residents themselves via a community co-operative set up by entrepreneur Agamemnon Otero only last year, and fully operational as of September. Otero is currently one of the 2014 cohort of London Leaders – the mayor of London scheme to promote green entrepreneurship – and few better embody the potential of entrepreneurs working in sustainability than him. Otero founded Repowering London as a not-for-profit co-operative specialising in local energy after his successes with the Edible Bus Stop and the Edible Overground. Each scheme is unified by a single theme: there are certain necessities that we all share, namely water, food and energy. The production and ownership of these, he fundamentally believes, can be shared. And increasingly they are in the estates he works in, from Hackney to Lambeth and Camden.
Guardian 6th Feb 2014 read more »
Across the UK at the start of 2014, we estimate that 6.59 million households are in fuel poverty as originally defined8, almost exactly one in four UK households, and up from 5.86 million at the start of 2013. This is an increase of 0.73 million households, up 13%.
ACE 6th Feb 2014 read more »
CHURSTON Ferrers Grammar School is championing the use of solar power to help it manage energy costs and to improve students’ understanding of sustainability. Sue Foot, the school’s director of finance and resources, said: “As a lead school for sustainability, we are committed to looking at alternative energy sources and our solar PV demonstrates our commitment to that goal.
Torquay Herald Express 6th Feb 2014 read more »
Northern Ireland Solar Farm
A large scale solar farm in Northern Ireland worth £6 million has been given the go-ahead by the Government. Located in Downpatrick, around 33 kilometres south of Belfast in County Down, the solar project will have a total capacity of 5.1MW, capable of generating electricity to power more than 1,500 homes.
Energy Live News 6th Feb 2014 read more »
A planned green energy plant designed to generate power using waste from a whisky distillery has been given the go ahead by councillors in Scotland this week. The anaerobic digestion facility at Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown will use spent malted barley and pot ale from the distilling process to produce biogas that can then be cleaned and injected into the gas grid or used to generate electricity.
Business Green 6th Feb 2014 read more »
A consortium of solar power financiers will today launch a $5m loan scheme in Connecticut that uses crowdsourcing to raise funding and, like the UK’s Green Deal, invites customers to take advantage of resulting energy bill savings to cover the cost of installations.
Business Green 6th Feb 2014 read more »
Ampair, the Dorset-based wind turbine manufacturer, has completed its acquisition of Westwind, the Belfast-based wind turbine manufacturer. Ampair, with over 40-years’ experience, is the UK’s oldest manufacturer of wind turbines. The acquisition allows Ampair to boast the title of having the largest range of wind turbines of any small wind manufacturer in the world, offering a selection of wind turbines from 100W through to 20kW. These turbines are typically used on locations ranging from yachts to powering farms and houses.
Farming UK 5th Feb 2014 read more »
The government has been accused of jeopardising the future of the UK’s small wind turbine manufacturers and making it tougher for farmers and communities to install turbines by slashing feed-in tariff (FiT) incentives by 20 per cent. Renewable energy developers across the sector are now rushing to install small scale solar arrays, wind turbines, and anaerobic digestion plants ahead of the latest wave of cuts to the popular subsidy scheme, which are due to come into effect on 1 April.
Business Green 5th Feb 2014 read more »
Solar evangelist, Guardian writer and SolarAid chairman, Jeremy Leggett, is currently in Africa visiting the SunnyMoney teams. In 2006 Jeremy founded SolarAid in order to help establish clean energy alternatives in Africa. Over the next few days, Jeremy will be taking a closer look at our distribution and sales techniques that form the basis of the SunnyMoney Way. We will be publishing his insights and reflections direct from the field.
Solar Aid 5th Feb 2014 read more »
SOUTH Devon bakers Hallett’s has invested in a commercial-sized solar PV system as part of its ongoing expansion programme. The Paignton-based family bakers, owned by Mel and Helen and managed by their son Chris, have had the panels installed at its Westfield Park Industrial Estate premises by local company Beco of Totnes.
Torquay Herald Express 4th Feb 2014 read more »
As ministers promise to inject fresh momentum into the faltering Green Deal energy efficiency scheme this year, the finance company which provides its loans has said it is doing everything in its power to boost uptake. The Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC) has been blamed in some quarters for the slow start to the scheme, which saw government fall a long way short of its goal of delivering 10,000 loans in the first year of the scheme. The latest figures reveal that just 1,612 households have Green Deal Plans in progress, representing just one per cent of the 129,000 assessments that have been carried out since the scheme was launched this time last year.
Business Green 4th Feb 2014 read more »
Glasgow Lighting Efficiency
GLASGOW has become the first UK local authority to switch to low-energy street lights following the launch of a new loan scheme by the Green Investment Bank. The city plans to convert its 70,000 streetlights to LEDs in a bid to reduce costs, energy consumption and light pollution, as part of a scheme that the Green Investment Bank hopes will be adopted by other councils across the UK.
Herald 5th Feb 2014 read more »
Glasgow City Council has become the first local authority to switch to low energy street lights through a new loan scheme from the Green Investment Bank (GIB). The city plans to convert its 70,000 streetlights to LEDs in a bid to reduce costs, energy consumption, and light pollution, as part of a scheme that the GIB hopes will be adopted by other councils across the UK.
Business Green 4th Feb 2014 read more »
Scotsman 5th Feb 2014 read more »
Glasgow will be markedly less orange in the near future, and its council will be millions of pounds better off, under plans from the government’s green fund. Street lights will be replaced with low-energy LEDs so that the familiar sodium glow gives way to bright white light. As well as saving money, it will be a boon to skywatchers in the surrounding countryside, as LED lights provide more illumination on the ground and less to the clouds. Close to 100% of the light goes downward, unlike conventional street lights which send a third of their glow into the night sky, causing light pollution. The project is the result of a new finance deal from the government-backed Green Investment Bank. Under the deal, councils will receive the cash needed for the replacements upfront, to be paid back over time as the savings materialise. The UK spends 300m a year on lighting public areas, including streetlamps but also motorways and large areas such as hospital or local authority car parks. At least 80% of this expenditure could be saved by replacing the current lights with LEDs, which provide more light for less money.
Guardian 4th Feb 2014 read more »
Energy minister says those approaching retirement should consider putting some of their savings into solar panels because they would deliver a better financial return than a pension. Greg Barker, the energy minister, said that anyone approaching retirement should consider putting some of their savings into solar panels because they would deliver a better financial return than a pension. Mr Barker disclosed that 500,000 British homes have installed solar panels, which allow users to generate their own electricity and sell any excess power to energy firms. Installing panels can cost several thousand pounds, but savings on bills and the ability to sell excess power mean households can turn a profit over time.
Telegraph 3rd Feb 2014 read more »
Investing in solar PV can provide a better financial return than a traditional pension, according to energy and climate change minister, Greg Barker. In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, Barker described solar PV as a “really attractive financial proposition”, and urged the public to consider investing in their own solar array.
Solar Portal 4th Feb 2014 read more »
It seems far-fetched to imagine that putting money into solar panels on the roof of your house could deliver a better return than in a private pension. But that is exactly what the energy minister, Greg Barker, argued in an interview with the Telegraph this week.
Telegraph 6th Feb 2014 read more »
Scotland’s Warm Homes Fund
Funding of almost £3 million has been awarded in the last year to 25 green energy projects aimed at tackling fuel poverty. The cash came from the Scottish Government’s £50m Warm Homes Fund, which provides grants and loans to help with the cost of installing renewable energy systems. Among the organisations to benefit was the West Whitlawburn Housing Co-operative. It received a loan of £1.5m towards a £7.5m scheme which aims to connect 543 homes in Cambuslang to a renewable biomass boiler.
Herald 4th Feb 2014 read more »
Holyrood ministers are coming under pressure to launch a £1.5 billion scheme to store energy using “liquid air” batteries and other technologies to help meet future power needs. An expert report due out this week by the left-leaning Jimmy Reid Foundation calls for a radical rethink by the Scottish Government. It should adopt “a much more ambitious strategy” on energy storage to create jobs, wealth and exports, it says.
Herald 3rd Feb 2014 read more »
The Solar House, a £1m five-bedroom property in Leicestershire, where heat from the sun is stored underground for use in winter. Harnessing the sun to warm our homes is nothing new. As Socrates declared, during a wood-fuel shortage in fifth-century BC Greece, “the southern side of a house should be built higher to catch the rays of the winter sun, and the northern side lower to prevent cold winds finding ingress”. With fuel bills rising, many scientists say it is blazingly obvious where we should be looking for our energy needs – the sun. “The solar energy hitting the earth is an average 1.366Kw per sq metre, roughly equivalent to a three-bar electric heater over every sq metre of the earth’s surface,” says astronomer Dr John Mason of the British Astronomical Association. The problem is that most of that energy hits the earth in summer. In winter, when we need power for heating, we have less su nshine and shorter days. So far, in the UK at least, zero-carbon buildings – a standard to which it is proposed all new UK homes should be built from 2016 – have been designed with a mix of renewable energies, such as solar, plus wind or biomass (plant and animal waste material). But last autumn what is claimed to be Britain’s first year-round, solar-powered house was completed. It was certainly about time. Switzerland, not renowned for a surfeit of sunshine, has had solar-powered homes for at least two decades.
FT 31st Jan 2014 read more »