Renewables

  • Renewables target deemed achievable

    The Renewables Advisory Board (RAB) has reported the UK could generate 14% of its total energy from renewables by 2020 if a set of identified radical policy changes are put into effect quickly. Recommendations include accelerating grid studies, streamlined consenting processes, early introduction of revised support mechanisms and, most importantly, strong political leadership. 

    The Board has also advised the Government how the additional measures could go on to achieve the full 15% share required by the EU's renewable energy target.

    In order to do this, experts in four sectors (bulk electricity, bulk heat, built environment and transport) were each asked to predict what could be delivered by 2020 with significant but achievable policy change. In total, the expert groups felt able to forecast bulk electricity could provide 7.1%; bulk heat could provide 0.9%; built environment 3.3%; and transport at 2.7%.

    With a further 1% remaining, the report sets out three possible options but stressed that delivery of each will present further challenges to meet the ambitious proposed target.

    The report concludes the 2020 target of 15% UK energy from renewables is achievable, but that rapid development of a transformed energy framework with radically new economic, political and social drivers is necessary. RAB also identified that renewables must be at the heart of energy policy and that many new policies are required and some, urgently.

    Alan Moore, Co-Chairman of RAB said: "If the 15% target is to be approached we need to establish a different energy world. Many of these changes will need to be radical and will require, above all else, political leadership and a determination to succeed.

    "Industry and commerce themselves stand ready to deliver but, as ever in the renewables industry, the greatest investment risk is seen as political risk. Investors need to be confident that government is determined to achieve its own targets."

  • Financial boost for offshore renewables

    Sea-based renewable technologies will receive added financial support from this week following an overhaul of the UK's system for supporting renewable energy.

    Energy and Climate Change Minister Mike O'Brien today announced up to £10m is to be made available to develop the next generation of offshore wind technology.

    Speaking at an event on Monday which, for the first time, brings together renewable industry leaders and the ports industry, Mr O'Brien said the UK government is determined to do all it can to meet its challenging renewable energy targets of securing 15% of all energy from renewable sources by 2020, despite the current economic situation.

    Mr O'Brien said: "Renewable energy is a weapon in our armoury to secure future energy supplies, reduce our reliance on foreign imports, and help tackle climate change.

    "That's why we're taking the right long term decisions to encourage the massive investment in renewables that we need to see. This includes changing the planning laws, increased financial support, and ensuring sufficient access to the grid.

    "This week's ramping up of financial backing in favour of technologies such as offshore wind is evidence of our determination to create the right investment environment for renewables. And the funding being made available in the next few months will put the UK ahead of the game for the next generation of offshore technologies.

    "I know that right around the world, companies, including energy firms, are facing difficult times. We are therefore actively examining how we can help make sure there is sufficient finance and other support available for viable projects which are short of the investment they need.

    "Taken together, these measures should leave investors in no doubt of the UK's commitment to renewable energy."

    Maria McCaffery, chief executive of British Wind Energy Association, said:

    "This is an important signal from Government on the continuing commitment to offshore wind and emerging offshore technologies. With the right policy framework and levels of support we can reach our 2020 targets."

    From 1 April, a new regime will come into place which will give offshore wind 50% extra financial support, through the Government's Renewable Obligation (RO) scheme. This is as a result of 'banding' the RO, which means rather than a flat rate of support across all renewable technology, emerging technologies that are further from commercial deployment will receive greater levels of support to encourage their development.

    Since its introduction in 2002, the amount of renewable electricity generated has nearly trebling from 1.8% in 2002 to 4.9% in 2007.  Banding will deliver further incentive to developers to deliver more eligible renewables generation such as offshore wind.

    The Low Carbon Energy Demonstration Fund, part of the Environmental Transformation Fund, is aimed at accelerating the technology needed to see more large-scale multi-mega watt turbines in offshore wind farms. Applications will open next month for up to £10 million of funding, which will be allocated to businesses in June.

  • Boost for offshore renewables

    Sea-based renewable technologies will receive added financial support from April following an overhaul of the UK's system for supporting renewable energy.

    Energy and climate change minister Mike O'Brien announced up to £10m is to be made available to develop the next generation of offshore wind technology. Speaking at an event which, for the first time, brought together renewable industry leaders and the ports industry, O'Brien said the UK government is determined to do all it can to meet its challenging renewable energy targets of securing 15% of all energy from renewable sources by 2020, despite the current economic situation. O'Brien said: "Renewable energy is a weapon in our armoury to secure future energy supplies, reduce our reliance on foreign imports, and help tackle climate change. That's why we're taking the right long term decisions to encourage the massive investment in renewables that we need to see. This includes changing the planning laws, increased financial support, and ensuring sufficient access to the grid.

    "This week's ramping up of financial backing in favour of technologies such as offshore wind is evidence of our determination to create the right investment environment for renewables. And the funding being made available in the next few months will put the UK ahead of the game for the next generation of offshore technologies.

    "I know that right around the world, companies, including energy firms, are facing difficult times. We are therefore actively examining how we can help make sure there is sufficient finance and other support available for viable projects which are short of the investment they need.

    "Taken together, these measures should leave investors in no doubt of the UK's commitment to renewable energy."

    Maria McCaffery, chief executive of British Wind Energy Association, said: "This is an important signal from Government on the continuing commitment to offshore wind and emerging offshore technologies. With the right policy framework and levels of support we can reach our 2020 targets."

    From 1 April, a new regime will come into place which will give offshore wind 50% extra financial support, through the Government's Renewable Obligation (RO) scheme. This is as a result of 'banding' the RO, which means rather than a flat rate of support across all renewable technology, emerging technologies that are further from commercial deployment will receive greater levels of support to encourage their development. Since its introduction in 2002, the amount of renewable electricity generated has nearly trebling from 1.8% in 2002 to 4.9% in 2007. Banding will deliver further incentive to developers to deliver more eligible renewables generation such as offshore wind.

    The Low Carbon Energy Demonstration Fund, part of the Environmental Transformation Fund, is aimed at accelerating the technology needed to see more large-scale multi-mega watt turbines in offshore wind farms. Applications will open next month for up to £10 million of funding, which will be allocated to businesses in June.

  • Petrofac acquires renewables sector technical specialist

    Petrofac, an international oil and gas facilities service provider, has purchased TNEI Services (TNEI) through the acquisition of its holding company New Energy Industries Limited for a consideration of £7.5m, of which 30% is contingent upon senior management's continued participation in the business.

    TNEI is a specialist consultancy supporting the energy, power and renewables sectors and has some 50 staff in Newcastle and Manchester; its acquisition further broadens Petrofac's technical consulting capacity. TNEI provides services in the areas of power transmission and distribution, planning and environmental consent and energy management. The acquisition brings to Petrofac both a strong technical reputation in the power sector and valuable new customer relationships.

    Martin Barnes, managing director of TNEI, commented: "As part of the Petrofac group, we see great potential both to provide broader services to TNEI's customers and to help Petrofac build a strong, technically-competent service to the wind renewables sector; we are excited about this step and the new opportunities it will provide for our team."

    Petrofac's group chief executive, Ayman Asfari, said: "Petrofac intends to build a position in the renewable energy sector and our existing technical consulting, offshore engineering, project management and operational skills provide a strong base from which to enter this rapidly developing market. The addition of TNEI's technical capabilities enhances Petrofac's ability to serve the wind renewables sector.

    "We are delighted to welcome Martin and the entire TNEI team to Petrofac. We look forward to working with them to grow Petrofac's access to renewables markets."

     

  • A renewables mountain to climb for the BSE sector

    New research by SummitSkills, the Sector Skills Council for building services engineering, has revealed the sector has a steep training climb ahead if it is to be ready for the future demand for environmental technologies.

    The new report, Potential Training Demand in Environmental Technologies in Building Services Engineering: Indicative training needs analysis using a scenario-based approach, is the second of a set of three reports analysing trends in the sector's engagement with renewables.

    It identifies the potential impact of these trends on training demands in the UK up to 2020 using two scenarios; one based on the concept of a mass-trained workforce, i.e. a nominal 100% of the sector being trained in the technologies appropriate to their core competencies, and the other a pro-rata analysis of scenario one, where 25-60% of the sector are trained depending on the environmental technology under consideration.

    Summarising the training figures for twelve environmental technologies in the English regions and devolved nations of the UK, the report estimates the number of awareness training places which would be required to promote careers in the sector. In addition, consideration is given to programmes and events in each region and devolved nation that could trigger a sudden demand for environmental technologies. The report will be subject to future updates as Treasury forecasts become available.

    Dr Mike Hammond, research manager at SummitSkills, said: "We've known for some time there is a gap between supply and demand in the renewables market, and this is only set to increase, particularly in the domestic market now the Government has given the green light to the continuation of the Renewable Heat Incentive and Feed-In Tariffs. This report attempts to identify early indicators of change and estimate training needs to avoid a scramble to meet market energy demand for renewables and government carbon reduction targets. To prevent overheating of the supply network and proliferation of rogue traders, the sector needs to take action now to train a workforce capable of meeting future demand for environmental technologies."

     

Page 2 of 2

Data Centre news from our sister title

@elecreviewmag