Swindon Solar Council
Construction is underway on a new solar project from Swindon Borough Council, which will couple income from 1.2 ROCs with savings from a private wire with the Swindon household waste recycling centre to produce substantial new cash flows for the council. The 2.5MW Barnfield Solar Park is being developed on a former landfill site adjacent to the recycling centre at Cheney Manor. If completed by the end of March, the project will be among the last to receive subsidy under the ROC regime and is expected to generate an income for Swindon Borough of approximately £200,000 a year.
Solar Portal 3rd Feb 2017 read more »
An innovative solar-linked battery storage project developed by Western Power Distribution is now up and running in Somerset. The £1 million trial at Copley Wood near Butleigh is connected to both the distribution network and a 1.5MW solar farm. The aim is to demonstrate the technical and commercial feasibility of such an arrangement. The batteries, which are mounted inside shipping containers, have a combined capacity of 300kW and can store 640kWh of power. The initiative is being funded through Ofgem’s Network Innovation Allowance, and will be conducted in partnership with British Solar Renewables and the National Solar Centre. Western Power Distribution innovation and low carbon network engineer Jenny Woodruff told Utility Week the use of containerised batteries, which can be moved from site to site, opens up the possibility of using battery storage as an “interim” network reinforcement. By providing a stop gap solution, containerised batteries could enable distribution networks to spend more time to assessing future network requirements before they decide on whether or not to invest in permanent reinforcements. Once a decision is made they could then be moved elsewhere. “Ultimately, if we’re trying to defer reinforcement because we don’t have the necessary level of certainty, what Ofgem wants is to not have stranded assets that don’t actually earn their keep,” said Woodruff.
Utility Week 2nd Feb 2017 read more »
North Ayrshire Council goes Solar
North Ayrshire Council has approved plans to investigate interest among its social housing tenants for the installation of solar PV on around 500 homes in an attempt to tackle fuel poverty and reduce carbon emissions in the region. A report submitted to the local authority’s Cabinet on 17 January outlined the approach to the £2.3 million scheme, which would require a financial contribution from tenants on a voluntary basis to be combined with feed-in tariff payments so that the scheme can be cost neutral over 20 years.
Solar Portal 1st Feb 2017 read more »
A new £250,000 trial to demonstrate how home batteries can increase capacity on the electricity network and enable more homes to install solar panels has been launched. Distributor Northern Powergrid has chosen Moixa Smart Batteries to be installed in 40 homes and linked in a virtual power plant in Yorkshire. The batteries will be split between 20 with a capacity of 2kWh and 20 with 3kWh, giving a total capacity of 100kWh. Solar panels will also be installed in 30 homes through the Energise Barnsley community energy initiative to test how the solution can reduce peak solar output onto power networks when there is low local demand. Northern Powergrid is funding installation of the batteries in Oxspring, near Barnsley. If successful, the project is expected to help network operators save “millions of pounds” for customers by reducing the need to upgrade infrastructure.
Energy Live News 1st Feb 2017 read more »
IMech 31st Jan 2017 read more »
A new type of small wind turbine for home electricity generation, intended to match the popularity and potential of solar power, is being developed in Europe. This will be the second time that attempts have been made by the European Commission (EC) to get wind turbines generally accepted for domestic and small-scale commercial use. Fifteen years ago, before solar panels became affordable, small wind turbines fixed to house roofs and chimneys were heralded as one of the best ways of helping to save the planet from global warming and cutting household bills, but it was an energy revolution that petered out.
Climate News Network 1st Feb 2017 read more »
The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has confirmed that it has scrapped plans for a new energy efficiency scheme to replace the Green Deal. The government will now instead rely on the performance of the private sector and its one remaining home energy efficiency scheme, the Energy Company Obligation (ECO), to meet the Conservative Party’s manifesto pledge of improving one million homes by 2020. It was announced two weeks ago that the Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC) had been acquired by City investors, who took over the scheme’s existing loan book while preparing to offer new loans to homeowners.
Solar Portal 30th Jan 2017 read more »
THE Ayrshire mining community of Cumnock is poised to get become Scotland’s fully ‘Green Town’. The plan is to make Cumnock carbon neutral town, creating a blueprint that can be rolled out across the rest of Scotland. The plans include proposals for the community to run its own hi-tech renewable energy system – based on sun, wind and water power – and make use of cutting edge digital and smart technologies. The regeneration proposals which have been put forward by the Scotland’s Towns Partnership, and received backing from the Scottish Government and the local council. Energy and communications suppliers including Scottish Power to BT are also supporting the plans. The town, which is the birthplace of Keir Hardie – the first Labour MP – and has a population of about 1300 is considered to be of perfect size to test cutting edge rene wable technologies on a mass scale, as well as smart metres and devices, high speed communications networks, ‘passive buildings’ – which are carbon neutral – and the widespread use of electric vehicles and cycle networks. Phil Prentice, head of Scotland’s Towns Partnership, said that Cumnock, which lies in a sleepy East Ayrshire backwater with poor transport links, could be transformed as the most technologically advanced town in the country, addressing issues such as fuel poverty and employment opportunities.
Sunday Herald 29th Jan 2017 read more »