Renewables

  • Greenpeace report shows need for greater transparency and collaboration to improve data centre energy sustainability

    Greater transparency in energy sustainable practice among data industry players will help improve collaboration to tackle rising carbon emissions seen in the industry. In Greenpeace’s 2017 green IT report, ‘Clicking Clean: Who is winning the race to build a green internet?’, many hyperscalers scored highly in the report for its adoption and initiatives on renewable energy, but other players in the industry were urged to improve advocacy and transparency, and to work more collaboratively.

  • Carbon Trust launches global competition

    The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) has launched a new global innovation competition to find and fund the development of innovative solutions to a challenge facing the offshore wind farm industry today: how to monitor the condition of subsea cables to ensure that they are not damaged during the load out and installation process. The competition aims to solve this challenge by identifying and supporting the development of novel condition monitoring systems for subsea cables.

  • Offshore wind park denied

    Energy minister Lord Bourne today announced development consent has been refused for the proposed Navitus Bay offshore wind park in Dorset.

  • Award winners announced at POWER-GEN Europe and Renewable Energy World Europe

    European power companies were recognised for their outstanding industry achievements this week at the Power Engineering International and Peabody awards ceremony during the annual POWER-GEN Europe and Renewable Energy World Europe Gala dinner.

  • Substations to facilitate integration of renewables and strengthening of power transmission grid

    ABB, a power and automation technology group, has won a significant order to provide substations and related power infrastructure for the Rampion Offshore Wind Farm. ABB will provide power infrastructure for the offshore platform as well as the onshore substation to efficiently integrate the new wind farm into the country’s transmission grid. ABB will also extend an existing substation that will receive the wind power. The wind farm is scheduled for completion in 2018.

  • Sustainability Live 2015

    Sustainability Live – incorporating Nemex and Energy Recovery - a UK exhibition for innovative energy management and sustainability returns to the NEC Birmingham from 21 to 23 April 2015.
    This year’s show is a must attend for electrical contractors, engineers, project managers and consultants, showcasing more than 160 participating organisations, including technology launches and solutions from the industry’s leading suppliers.

  • 2014 the year of renewables and energy efficiency says Napit

    With the Green Deal scheme being simplified and starting to gather momentum, the domestic RHI launching in the Spring and renewables maintaining popularity in the UK, 2014 is the perfect year to expand into the renewables and energy efficiency markets, according to Napit.

  • Use your energy efficiently, visit the Renewables Roadshow

    With dozens of demands on your time this Autumn, the Renewables Roadshow is the only exhibition that brings the best products & presentations to you, and with theatre timetables finalised, now is the time to get on board!

    Keeping your finger firmly on the pulse of our marketplace is seemingly impossible these days and that is why the Renewables Roadshow has been built for the busiest of businesses. With a variety of visitor attractions brimming with bitesize content and an exhibition showcasing energy efficient solutions, we have everthing you need to get up to speed in a single day.

  • Big name line-up for Renewables Awards

    This September the Renewables Awards returns and is set to be even bigger than before.

    On Thursday, 13 September the Renewables Awards returns to the Ricoh Arena to reveal the winners across a series of sixteen extremely competitive categories. "The quality and quantity of entrants for this year's awards surpassed expectations yet again and we want to ensure the evening's entertainment does the same," said event organiser, Dan Caesar.

  • Get ready for the 'Green Rush' with the Renewables Roadshow

    With thousands of businesses looking to turn green into gold, those that get on board first will reap the rewards.

    With the Government's flagship investment programme, Green Deal, due this Autumn, the organiser of the Renewables Roadshow argues that if your business doesn't get on board now, you might miss out on the biggest opportunity the construction industry has seen for years.

  • Renewables Event reacts to government renewables subsidy announcement

    With the government announcement ‘calls to reduce the subsidy by 25% have been resisted in favour of a 10% drop’, the renewables sector will no doubt be analysing the finely balanced issues of business and consumer energy bills, carbon reduction commitments, investment opportunity and complete decarbonisation.

    According to the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), in an announcement by energy secretary Ed Davy: “Renewable energy will create a multi-billion pound boom for the British economy, driving growth and supporting jobs across the country.”

  • S&C selected by EDF Energy Renewables to supply equipment for UK Grid compliance

    S&C Electric Europe has won the multi-million pound contract to supply reactive compensation to EDF Energy Renewables’ Fallago Rig wind farm, one of the UK’s largest onshore wind farms. The site in the Scottish borders will consist of 48 turbines providing 144MW of renewable electricity, which can power around 90,000 homes and will form a major step forward in meeting the government’s renewable energy targets.

  • ECA launches renewables and microgeneration e-forum for M&E contractors

    The Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) has launched an e-forum for mechanical and electrical contractors who want to keep up to date and share their questions and expertise in the area of microgeneration and renewables.

    Paul Reeve, head of safety and environment at the ECA, said: “The e-forum has already proved to be a powerful tool for discussing policy and practice across the full range of renewable and low carbon measures.  Since we launched the forum in mid-September, over 200 registered members have joined. Both members, and the ECA team, are learning daily from each other’s experience and expertise.

  • Napit offers free renewables workshops for London enterprises

    London-based trade installers can take advantage of free Renewable Energy workshops throughout October and November. Funded in part by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) and spearheaded by the Institute for Sustainability, Flash, working in partnership with Napit, provides access to specifically designed workshops which focus on business opportunities relating to low carbon emissions and the renewable energy sector, including:

  • Renewables - Championing the Green scene

    Renewables - Championing the  Green scene

    2007 saw European Union leaders agree to binding targets on the use of renewables in a bid to rapidly expand the use of green energy sources. The government signed up to a deal to ensure 20% of all European energy was to be derived from renewables sources by 2020. The UK alone has committed to cutting its emissions by 60% by 2050, although without a sufficiently skilled workforce in place to design install and maintain new technology this may not be achievable

    The building services engineering (BSE) sector has a major role to play in meeting UK targets by ensuring that training structures are in place to support the move to renewable energy, which include solar thermal, photovoltaics, micro-wind, biomass, ground and air source heat pumps, and micro CHP.

    As the sector skills council for the BSE sector, SummitSkills is heavily involved in a variety of activities to ensure the industry is geared up for the shift to renewable energy.

    Research conducted by SummitSkills at stage two of its Sector Skills Agreement (SSA) - the Assessment of Current Provision - established that some qualification content is out of date or not suitable for sector needs, in relation to specific renewables and environmental technologies. Consequently, the UK is lagging behind in the requirements to be able to design, install and maintain technologies. As a result, SummitSkills has been updating the National Occupational Standards (NOS) for the sector to integrate renewable technologies into mainstream qualifications and ensure approved training and assessment is put in place as soon as possible.

    At government level, the organisation is currently working centrally and regionally to reinforce the crucial role the BSE sector has to play in the development of the environmental technology market; with specific reference to renewables.

    There is a close link between the skills of existing sector routes and new technologies. SummitSkills views this link not as new career roles, but as an extension of existing careers and industry approved qualifications, with additional specific technology training related to the work carried out. Consequently, SummitSkills has been working with the Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (IPHE) to develop of the minimum technical competence requirements for the integration of environmental technologies into the appropriate Competent Persons Scheme.

    Microgeneration needs
    Microgeneration is a key part of the government’s strategy to help combat climate change, and is currently promoted through the Low Carbon Buildings Programme.

    SummitSkills is the sector skills council for microgeneration and commissioned a report in early 2007, supported by Engineering Services Training Trust Ltd and the Heating and Ventilating Contractors’ Association (HVCA), to assess current provision and the measures in place for training on microgeneration technologies in the UK.

    The report spelt out the need for the industry stakeholders to work closely with SummitSkills to champion renewable energy training on a local, regional and national level to ensure a skilled workforce.

    The report resolved there are currently few microgeneration courses in combined heat and power and hydro, with only a limited number of these actually leading to a recognised qualification, particularly in wind and solar-PV. It also highlighted the lack of benchmarks for best practice in the installation of renewable energy systems, which SummitSkills feels is responsible for hindering the development of training courses It also recommends that funding is increased to improve the training facilities available.

    Manufacturers and sustainability
    In addition to its focus on training provision, SummitSkills also operates a Manufacturers and Sustainability Interest Group to identify and support emerging environmental technologies.

    The group links with employers, professionals and employer associations to drive the government on the development and uptake of best practice in renewables. Part of its remit is to ensure technical skills training is in place, and to involve manufacturers in competence and accreditation schemes.

    This group complements SummitSkills’ Interest Groups that enable employers to air their views and develop solutions for skills and training requirements in the BSE sector. This helps to form future strategies and objectives for SummitSkills.

    Renewable energy in Wales
    SummitSkills has been involved in liaising, on behalf of the Welsh Assembly Government, with residents to reduce the planning process for small-scale renewable energy generation equipment, such as solar panels or wind turbines.

    Current laws make the process unattractive to homeowners, proving lengthy and expensive. Professional installers, surveyed by SummitSkills, believe this market could grow significantly if the planning process is improved, leading to greater productivity. The Welsh Assembly Government plans to improve energy efficiency in 200,000 Welsh homes by 2020.

    Moving forward
    Extensive research has established the need for change in the education and training provision in the sector. As part of its sector skills agreement, SummitSkills has taken this research and incorporated it into stage three of the project - a draft action plan that reveals five key skills priorities to be addressed in order to develop and maintain a skilled workforce.

    The five priorities are:
    - Professional image and competence – promoting a positive image of the sector
    - Communication and information – creating a knowledge centre for all sector skills development needs
    - Training provision – ensuring proactive, quality and relevant training
    - Funding – flexibility in funding to meet fast-changing needs
    - Management and leadership – supporting the sector to plan and develop profitable and competitive business

    Tackling environmental technology provision relates directly to the third skills priority – training provision. As part of this priority SummitSkills lays out a proposed solution for the lack of appropriate skills, building on its existing work on developing and implementing National Occupational Standards (NOS) for current and emerging environmental technologies to embrace craft and professional occupations. It is key to ensuring that environmental technologies are fully integrated within other activities, such as the careers strategy and apprenticeship training frameworks.
    SummitSkills’ work encompasses a broad spectrum of activities, all key to ensuring that the BSE sector has an appropriate infrastructure in place to succeed on renewable energy training strategy. It is vital not only are installers and engineers trained in these technologies, but they are trained to a recognised standard. In order to achieve this successfully, SummitSkills needs commitment from all partners within the sector for continuous improvement – only then will we see a competent, highly-skilled workforce capable of meeting the demands of the industry.

    For further information on progress in environmental or renewables specific skills, visit www.summitskills.org.uk/renewables.

  • Centrica signs renewables contract with Macquarie, Novera

    Centrica PLC has signed a long-term power purchase agreement with NM Renewable Energy, a joint venture between Macquarie Bank and Novera Energy, which will deliver approximately 300GWh of ‘green’ electricity to British Gas customers every year - enough to supply around 60,000 homes.

    The agreement Centrica has entered into, commencing in April 2005, will run for more than 10 years, meeting approximately 5% of Centrica’s rising renewables obligation. Electricity supplied to British Gas customers will be delivered from a diverse range of renewable sources, including hydro-electric, landfill gas and an onshore wind farm.

  • Pro-renewables roadshow tours Scotland

    A four-month promotional roadshow for the advantages of renewable energy is underway in Scotland.

    Entitled It’s Only Natural, the tour began in Inverness and is primarily intended to encourage public support for ‘green’ energy and quell opposition to installations such as wind turbines.

    The deputy enterprise minister, Allan Wilson, said renewable energy had a crucial role to play in combating the effects of climate change while benefiting the economy. He said this was why the Scottish Executive had set a target for 18% of Scotland’s electricity to come from renewable energy by 2010 and 40% by 2020.

    Wilson said: “We are committed to achieving our targets through a range of renewable technologies – on and off-shore wind, biomass, wave and tidal and micro renewables.

    “However, it’s also vital to ensure that the public are fully aware of all the issues that surround these policies – the benefits that more renewable energy will bring and how a potential project can impact on your area.

    “The 2003 study Public Attitudes to Windfarms has shown that the public are broadly in favour of renewable energy. We absolutely welcome a debate, but it must be an informed debate.”

  • Welsh renewables vital to achieving 2010 target

    With up to 76 onshore windfarms in the planning, Wales has the potential to meet up to 18% of its electricity demand from renewables and will play a vital role in achieving the UK target of 10% electricity from renewables by 2010, Malcolm Wicks said this week.

    Speaking in Cardiff at the latest in a series of Energy Review consultation meetings, the energy minister said: “Wales faces the same problems as the rest of the country. The need to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, tackle declining domestic energy supplies against increasing world demand and secure a diverse energy mix for the future.

    “The Energy Review seeks to answer some of those problems, but that needs input from all of us. Renewables is one aspect, but there is no single solution, the fact is we need to decide now on where Wales will get its future energy supply.

    “One thing is clear. Doing nothing is not an option. There are some tough decisions ahead, some big challenges, but no one solution. How the people and businesses of Wales see their energy future is a vital part of that solution.”

    Current renewable generation in Wales meets around 3.6% of all electricity consumed producing around 450GWh.

    The prime minister has asked Wicks to lead a review of long-term energy policy. He was visiting Cardiff as part of a three-month public consultation period about how the country should meet its energy challenges.

    The average Welsh resident consumes around 64kWh less energy than the average UK resident, but Wales' CO2 emissions are slightly higher than those of the rest of the UK.

    A consultation document is published at www.dti.gov.uk/energy/review. Anyone wishing to make a contribution to the review can do so on-line or in writing to Energy Review Team, DTI, 1 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0ET

  • Skills needed to meet demand in renewables

    SummitSkills has announced a major new project called Horizon, which will create a Sector Skills Agreement for building services engineering, aimed at giving employers a greater say in training.
    Following research into the skills required for the future and the quality of training provision currently available, SummitSkills has identified that new IT implementation and the impact of environmental technology are two key issues when it comes to training.
    Traditionally basic skills have covered numeracy and literacy but the fast development of mobile communication equipment, such as PDAs, means that staff, particularly the less IT-literate, may need training for this new technology.
    The plans local government intend to implement to reduce carbon emissions will also see companies installing and maintaining combined heat and power, solar panels and photovoltaic cells.
    At present, many firms are reactive rather than proactive with regards to developing skills in renewable technologies.
    Businesses risk being left behind if they do not prepare for the future by offering adequate training to meet these skill requirements.
    Findings will be published throughout autumn. To find out some of the key issues and give your opinions on the findings and solutions, visit
    www.horizon-ssa.org.uk.

  • Fund for development of renewables in Scotland

    A £6m fund to support renewable energy developments in the east of Scotland has been set up.
    The Sigma Sustainable Energies Fund is financed by a range of partners from the public and private sectors, including ScottishPower and Scottish & Southern Energy.
    It will consider energy-related projects that will stimulate growth in the renewables sector. A wide range of fields will be covered including wind, solar, hydro-electric, biomass and ocean. As much as £500,000 will be donated by each of the partners in the fund.
    The Sigma Sustainable Energies Fund will also consider projects that develop home and community power systems, fuel cells and energy storage.

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