Archive for October 2011
Exhibition and Conference 24th November 2011
If you are a farmer or landowner thinking of implementing renewables of any kind then this one-day conference and exhibition at the Royal Highland Centre next month could be worth a visit. A range of expert speakers from the financial, renewables and farming sectors will discuss the right technology for your operation and how to finance it. Everything from FITs and selling to the grid to working with your local community and ‘activating the silent majority’ will be covered.
Breakout sessions and workshops cover individual technologies including wind, hydro, biomass, anaerobic digestion and solar. Maitland Mackie is the conference chairman and the opening address will be given by Richard Lochead MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment.
Business electricity users in Scotland ‘missing out on opportunities to benefit from renewable energy technologies’
A report by industry body Scottish Renewables has found that only 3.6% of applications for renewable energy schemes eligible for Feed In Tarrifs last year came from small enterprises, with 95% coming from private homeowners.
KHI to carry out vital technology development work in Orkney
First Minister Alex Salmond today welcomed an announcement by Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) that it intends to test its new tidal energy system in Scottish waters.
Japan’s KHI will test its new technology at the world-leading European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, using its expertise in engines, marine propulsion and gas turbines systems to develop a tidal power generation system.
Building on these activities, KHI plans to take part in future large UK, Japanese and global projects to harness renewable energy, creating more possibilities for future collaborations in Scotland.
The company’s announcement was also welcomed by Scottish Development International (SDI), which has been integral in making the connections between KHI, EMEC and the Scottish Government to enable KHI to test its technology in Scotland.
First Minister Alex Salmond said: “I am delighted that KHI has decided to trial its new tidal power generation system in Scottish waters, at the world-leading European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney. It is a very welcome recognition of Scotland’s vast marine renewables potential. Japan is one of the great industrial nations of the world and I am encouraged that it shares Scotland’s vision of building on a strong engineering heritage to harness our natural resources and generate clean, renewable power that can reduce harmful emissions and tackle global climate change.”
“Scotland has around one quarter of Europe’s tidal energy resource and a growing expertise in offshore renewables and I am determined that we continue to encourage world-leading companies like KHI to work with us in developing pioneering technologies that can power the economies of the future and benefit the generations that follow us.”
Anne MacColl, chief executive, Scottish Development International, said: “KHI’s decision to trial its new tidal power generation system at EMEC is testament to Scotland’s growing international reputation in emerging low carbon technologies. Global companies such as KHI are being drawn to Scotland thanks to our natural resources and expertise as well as our commitment and ambition towards forging a low carbon future. Through our teams in Tokyo, Japan and in Scotland we were able to provide KHI with extensive support and guidance. During their visits to Scotland last year we were also able to make the key introductions to EMEC and the Scottish Government. We now look forward to working in partnership with other agencies to help make this test programme a reality.”
Richard Morris, commercial director, EMEC said: “EMEC is delighted to have signed a contract with Kawasaki Heavy Industries to use our tidal test site at the Fall of Warness, in Orkney. To have Kawasaki, a large multinational company, carrying out vital technology development work at EMEC, the world’s first and only accredited wave and tidal test site, demonstrates our world-leading position, which further cements Scotland at the forefront of the renewable energy industry.”
Plans for other CCS projects in Scotland must be urgently accelerated
The future development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology in the UK has been left up in the air today following the announcement that the UK Government and ScottishPower have failed to agree terms for a large-scale trial at the Longannet coal-fired power station, in Fife. Longannet was in line for a £1bn grant as the only finalist left a UK government CCS competition which has been running since 2007.
Dr Richard Dixon, Director of WWF Scotland said:
“This news is massively disappointing and threatens Scotland’s, and the rest of the UK’s, ambition to be at the forefront of developing this new technology. If technical and economic hurdles can be overcome CCS has the potential to help reduce emissions at thousands of coal power stations around the world. However, almost four years after launching its funding competition, plans for CCS in the UK have descended into farce. Four years have effectively been wasted in the battle to tackle climate change.
“The UK Government’s decisions to roll forward the £1bn competition fund to fund other CCS projects is welcome but the process for identifying these must be urgently accelerated. Lots of valuable research and planning has been done around the Longannet proposal, which could put Scotland in pole postion to have a CCS scheme at the existing gas-fired power station at Peterhead or the recently consented gas-fired power station at Cockenzie.
The environmental group said today’s announcement had big ramifications for plans to build new coal-fired power stations. Dr Dixon added:
“Even a £1bn sweetener was not enough to make the economics of running a coal-fired power station in the coming decades stack up. This must surely be the final nail in the coffin for the proposal at Hunterston which has never made economic or environmental sense.”
A report by WWF previously found Longannet power station to the best value option for UK Government trials to capture carbon emissions.  The environmental group warned that some of the other sites being considered would result in vastly higher carbon emissions, actually increasing emissions instead of reducing them.
An exchange at Prime Minister’s Questions today:
Mr. Speaker, given the importance of carbon capture and storage both as a way of helping reduce our carbon emissions and also as an exportable technology to help rebalance the economy will the prime minister now put his words into action and step in to ensure that the Longannet demonstration project goes ahead?
What I can say to the honourable gentleman is that the funding we set aside for carbon capture and storage is still there. That funding will be made available. Clearly the Longannet scheme isn’t working in the way that they intended, but the money from the government – the support from the government – for this vital technology is there.
The Energy Secretary Chris Huhne confirmed later in the afternoon that the Longannet scheme was not going ahead. He said that the length of pipeline needed for Longannet and the distance from reservoirs made the scheme unviable.