The British government has announced a “transitional period” which will allow many biomass CHP projects under construction to be completed. In July this year – with no formal consultation with industry and only 21 days notification – the Government introduced changes to the Renewable Heat Incentive tariffs for biomass combined heat and power plants with under 20% power efficiency. The UK Renewable Energy Association warned that the changes put over £140 million of low-carbon investment at risk. But Jessie Norman MP, Junior Energy Minister has now confirmed that the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy would soften changes introduced to tariffs for certain biomass CHP plants introduced in August 2016. During the new transitional period (until 31 March 2017) the tariff reductions will only apply to plants that produce 10% power (known as power efficiency, with the remaining 90% being heat), whereas before the tariff reduction applied nearly immediately to projects with up to 20% power efficiency.
Scottish Energy News 21st Oct 2016 read more »
Forfar-based Forster Energy has agreed a partnership with Renewable Energy Investments to provide access to 100% funding for solar PV projects via a power purchase agreement. This will enable Scottish businesses, public sector, commercial landlords and community groups an alternative way to fund clean energy generation projects, secure a reduced electricity tariff and reduce carbon emissions. In return for the leasing of the airspace above their roof, community groups will receive a discounted rate on the electricity produced by the solar PV system for 25 years, guaranteed only to rise by RPI.
Scottish Energy News 21st Oct 2016 read more »
Forster Energy has partnered with Renewable Energy Investments (REI) to offer a power purchase agreement (PPA) model allowing a wide range of potential clients to adopt solar energy at zero upfront cost.
Solar Portal 20th Oct 2016 read more »
Irish energy company ESB has invested €2.5m to take a minority stake in Terra Solar with the aim of accelerating the development of solar generation in Ireland. The companies said they have the potential to deliver over 260MW of electricity from solar. Terra Solar has previously announced plans to develop solar farms in Kerry and Clare and is now also accelerating the roll out of projects in Limerick, Waterford and Wexford.
RE News Biz 20th Oct 2016 read more »
Solar Portal 20th Oct 2016 read more »
Turbine deliveries have recently been completed at the 7.5MW Hoprigshiels windfarm in the Borders to enable installation work to proceed. One turbine has now been erected and two more are soon to follow – autumn weather permitting. This joint venture wind farm is being jointly developed by Community Energy Scotland (CES) and Berwickshire Housing Association.
Scottish Energy News 19th Oct 2016 read more »
Sport Centre goes Solar
The Craigdon Mountain Sports – Pentland Outdoor Centre in Edinburgh is now benefitting from lower running costs – thanks to its new solar-powered heating and cooling systems provided and installed by AES Solar and Solar Kingdom. An AES Solar spokesman explained: “This new build project features an advanced heating and cooling system, other energy savings measures and in the case of this submission, a solar roof as an integral part of a radical building design. This is a building that makes a statement.
Scottish Energy News 19th Oct 2016 read more »
First LED Community
A SCHEME aimed at making a Western Isles district the first LED community in the UK has dealt with referrals from around 140 homes for the free lighting upgrade. Tighean Innse Gall is working with community windfarm charity Point and Sandwick Trust on a five-year project to convert the whole peninsula to energy-efficient lighting in a bid to tackle fuel poverty in the area. The LED Energy Communities project officer Dan Morrison has been working on replacing the lightbulbs in houses. Under the lighting project, each household can get up to 14 bulbs free of charge. At about £6 each, that is a gift of about £84 which should cut yearly bills by around 10 per cent The cost of the bulbs is being covered by Point and Sandwick Trust, who have committed £72,000 a year to the project. Point and Sandwick Trust general manager Donald John MacSween said: “We are top of the national league of fuel poverty statistics. “A wet, windy climate, ageing population, low wages, a significant number of properties below the national ‘tolerable standard’ and above-average prices for fuel of all types all combine to make fuel poverty a major issue. “Point and Sandwick Trust have a strong commitment to helping people in direct, practical ways, and by helping to reduce consumers’ carbon footprint we are partly fulfilling our long-term aim.”
Scotsman 18th Oct 2016 read more »
Cities have an “unprecedented” opportunity to transform and decarbonise energy systems and transition to greener city infrastructure, according to a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). Renewable Energy in Cities released today (18 October), analyses the overall energy use in 3,649 cities, including London and Aberdeen, and explores how different cities can scale-up renewable energy and green infrastructure by 2030. The report highlights best practices from different cities from around the world and shows what policies would need to be implemented to accommodate the low-carbon transition. The IRENA report also suggests that city actors can accelerate the renewable energy transition at a local level by implementing city acting planners, regulators, financers and operators of urban infrastructure. Pressure has been mounting on UK cities specifically to combat rising energy demand by investing in renewable energy sources as part of a transition to smart cities, in order to cope with growing energy demand. Analysis from Smart Energy GB recently highlighted that electricity demand is set to increase by at least 30% in London, Cardiff, Birmingham and Bristol by 2035. Other groups are calling on substantial policy intervention to promote the low carbon transition in cities across the UK. The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) has previously called on the then-unannounced London Mayor to set up a publicly-run energy company for London in order to promote low carbon transition for the capital.
Edie 18th Oct 2016 read more »
Rooftop solar will play a crucial role in supplying electricity to the world’s burgeoning city populations due to the ease of retrofitting PV onto established buildings, according to the latest report from International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The ‘Renewable Energy in Cities’ study noted that installed rooftop solar PV could rise to 580GW under a major paradigm shift for household energy consumption. Combined with energy storage and electric vehicles, PV will help consumers produce their own electricity and reduce risks related to shortages, blackouts and volatility in electricity prices.
PV Tech 20th 0ct 2016 read more »
Northern Ireland Solar
A dairy company is preparing to bring forward what is thought to be the largest ground mount solar farm of its kind to be built in Northern Ireland following the confirmation of a 5MW private wire development in Cookstown, County Tyrone. Dale Farm will work with CES Energy to begin construction of the development in mid-2017, which will connect directly into the business’ private network at its cheese processing facility in Dunmanbridge.
Solar Portal 18th Oct 2016 read more »
Less than 60 per cent of homes across the UK meet basic standards of acceptability in terms of cleanliness, affordability and structural conditions, according to housing charity Shelter. The Living Home standard drawn up by the charity – which aims to be a kind of ‘living wage’ standard for housing – looks at a home’s affordability, security of tenure and structural condition to judge whether it meets basic requirements as a comfortable dwelling. Shelter surveyed almost 2,000 people across the country to see how their homes compare to the new standard. Alongside concerns over rising prices and short-term lets, the survey, released today, found almost one in five homes failed the test due to poor living conditions – including the inability to keep homes warm and free from mould and damp. It comes as campaigners step up their calls for energy efficiency to be classified as a ‘national infrastructure priority’ by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC), the body set up last year by former Chancellor George Osborne to chart a long-term path for the country’s infrastructure investment. While the NIC will not assess new components of the built environment – such as new-build schools, hospitals – it will consider existing buildings, it confirmed this week.
Business Green 17th Oct 2016 read more »
The first stage of the £320 million Heat Networks Investment project announced by the government last year has been launched with a £39 million pilot scheme. The pilot scheme is open to local authorities and other public sector bodies excluding central government departments, applying for any efficient heating and cooling network in England and Wales. Applicants can apply for grants or loans to support construction, expansion, refurbishment, and interconnection, including works to access recoverable heat and upgrade heating systems inside existing properties. Multiple criteria will be used to score and rank applications with respect to their carbon savings, customer impact and social net present value. The pilot was welcomed by the Association of Decentralised Energy (ADE), which called the funding “the right next step”. ADE’s director Dr Tim Rotheray said: “The launch of this pilot is a cornerstone for attracting up to £2 billion of capital investment for new heat network infrastructure. “More than 150 local authorities and a number of private sector property developers are working to deliver these infrastructure investments and build a foundation for a long-term district heating market in the UK.
Utility Week 17th Oct 2016 read more »
SSE welcomes launch of £320m heat network investment fund and calls for further industry measures.
SSE 20th Oct 2016 read more »
Swansea Valley Wind Co-op
A SWANSEA Valley community renewable project, which has taken nearly two decades to complete, is celebrating the delivery of its wind turbines. Awel Co-Op is an independent society which was set up in 2015 by Awel Aman Tawe, a community energy charity which aims to make difference to the lives of people at the top of the Swansea and Amman Valleys.
South Wales Guardian 17th Oct 2016 read more »
In its last report before being disbanded, the Energy and Climate Change Committee (ECC) has urged the UK Government to incentivise innovative energy storage and demand response technologies that could provide a clean, flexible and secure energy system fit for the future.
Edie 15th Oct 2016 read more »
The Government should redesign its Capacity Market – a subsidy scheme designed to minimise the risk of electricity blackouts – to incentivise innovative energy storage and demand side response (DSR) technologies that could make our energy grid, cleaner, more flexible and secure, according to MPs on the Commons’ Energy and Committee.
Scottish Energy News 17th Oct 2016 read more »
Large-scale batteries to store energy and devices that switch themselves off are likely to be key technologies for keeping the UK’s lights on while shutting down old coal and nuclear plants, an influential committee of MPs has said. The threat of blackouts has receded for this winter after scares earlier in the year, National Grid said on Friday, citing a reprieve for Yorkshire’s Eggborough coal-fired power station, as well as greater flexibility from companies with big energy requirements. But the respite will be brief unless further action is taken, warned parliament’s energy and climate change select committee. The MPs recommend investment in two major areas: on the supply side, energy storage; and on the demand side, efficiency technologies that smooth out peaks in usage, for instance by switching devices off and on and running them at lower power at times.
Guardian 15th Oct 2016 read more »
Baroness Neville-Rolfe’s speech on energy efficiency delivered to the International Energy Agency – in full. We are also thinking about how to motivate people to install energy efficient solutions. When I was an executive at Tesco, a major supermarket chain, we found that installing lobbies on our stores returned the cost of capital needed within two years. When people move house they are more likely to make improvements to their bathrooms and kitchens, but why not the efficiency of their houses, which can save them money – as well as emissions? Increases in the efficiency of our renewables sector have been particularly marked. This is very welcome since in the long run only systems that don’t require subsidy can be viable. Taking offshore wind power as an example, when the Contracts for Difference Scheme was launched three years ago, we set the maximum price we would pay for electricity generated by offshore projects in 2017 at £140/MWh. In March this year we announced that this would fall to £105 for projects generating in 2021 – already a 25 per cent reduction. With projects competing against each other in an auction we expect the actual price we pay to be even lower. And we have set out our ambition that offshore prices continue to fall. We are keen to promote the greater use of heat networks in built-up areas – they’re a very efficient way of delivering heat, and can utilise a range of low carbon sources. And they work well already in Scandinavia, Germany and France for example, and there are already some in the UK.
Business Green 14th Oct 2016 read more »
Ecotricity’s green gas mill has been given the go-ahead to be built. The project at Sparsholt College in Hampshire – the first of its kind in Britain – received planning permission this week from Winchester City Council. The £10 million green gas mill funded by Ecotricity will be fuelled by locally sourced grass and produce enough clean gas to heat over 4000 homes per year. The project is also expected to inject £60 million into the local economy. As part of the partnership, Ecotricity will also help fund the development of a Renewable Energy Demonstration Centre at the college. The college has also agreed funding of a £1.2 million in grant from the Local Enterprise Partnership (M3 LEP).
Utility Week 14th Oct 2016 read more »
The Small Wind Co-op has launched its second share offering to fund the installation of farm-scale wind turbines in Scotland and Wales. The offer aims to raise £550,000 with a minimum investment of £100 and a protected average annual return of 6.5 per cent over 20 years. This follows a successful share offering this summer which raised over £1 million for the two small community-owned projects. The offering encourages local participation, giving priority to people living within 20 miles of the projects.
Business Green 18th Oct 2016 read more »
Renews Biz 17th Oct 2016 read more »
Small Wind Co-op 5th Oct 2016 read more »