Tag Archive: Renewable

  1. Marshfield Energy Project wins £20,000 grant

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    A bid we submitted to the Rural Community Energy Fund has been approved and a new project will be under way very soon.

    This project will comprise a feasibility study for a renewable energy scheme for Marshfield which will update our figures from 2012 on wind and solar power and add in the option of Anaerobic Digestion.

    Anaerobic Digestion ( AD) is a natural process where plant and animal materials ( biomass) are broken down by micro-organisms in the absence of air:

    • The AD process begins when biomass is put inside a sealed tank or digester.
    • Naturally occurring micro-organisms digest the biomass, which releases a methane-rich gas ( biogas) that can be used to generate renewable heat and power; this helps cut fossil fuel use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
    • The remaining material ( digestate) is rich in nutrients, so it can be used as a fertiliser.

    Many forms of biomass are suitable for AD; including food waste, slurry and manure, as well as crops and crop residues.

    When the studies are complete we will be holding an event to explain the findings and get your feedback on next steps. We’re not going to do anything without the support and backing of the community, so this feedback will be very important.

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  2. Government’s Solar Strategy turns roofs into power stations

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    Plans to turn the Government estate as well as factories, supermarkets and car parks into “solar hubs” have been outlined in a new strategy by Energy Minister Greg Barker today.

    The Solar Strategy, the first of its kind in the UK, sets out the Governments ambition to see solar rolled out more widely and with it the potential to support tens of thousands of jobs.

    Launching the Solar Strategy at SunSolar Energy in Birmingham, Energy Minister Greg Barker said:

    “We have put ourselves among the world leaders on solar and this ambitious Strategy will place us right at the cutting edge.

    “There is massive potential to turn our large buildings into power stations and we must seize the opportunity this offers to boost our economy as part of our long term economic plan.

    “Solar not only benefits the environment, it will see British job creation and deliver the clean and reliable energy supplies that the country needs at the lowest possible cost to consumers.”

    In a further initiative, the Department for Education is working on ways to improve energy efficiency across the 22,000 schools in England, to reduce their annual energy spend of £500 million. The initiative will encourage the deployment of PV on schools alongside promoting energy efficiency.

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  3. Energising Communities – Programme

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    Here is the programme for the day:

    10.30am Registration and coffee
    11.00-11.15 Introduction by Mark Letcher, Climate Works
    Welcome address by Karen Wilkinson, Marshfield Energy Project
    Community Energy in context, Tim Willmott, Marshfield Energy Project
    11.15-11.35 What’s driving community energy? Merlin Hyman, Chief Executive, Regen SW
    Implications and opportunities for local communities. Karen Wilkinson, Marshfield Energy Project
    11.35-12.05 Energising our community. Tony Kerr, Marshfield Energy Project
    12.05-12.20pm Break – tea/coffee
    12.20-12.50 Questions & Answers to speakers
    12.50-1.50 Lunch
    1.50-2.20 Community Energy – how we approached this.
    Philip Wolfe – West Mills Solar
    Peter Capener – Bath & West Community Energy
    Jane Brady – TRESOC (Totnes Renewable Energy Society)
    2.20-2.45 Panel discussion
    2.45-3.00 Tea/coffee
    3.00-3.30 Rt Hon Vince Cable
    3.30-3.35 Thanks and close


    Download the programme here: Energising Communities Programme

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  4. Renewable Heat Incentive turns up the heat for UK householders

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    Householders could get paid hundreds of pounds a year for heat generated by solar thermal panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker confirmed today.

    The tariff levels have been set at 7.3p/kWh for air source heat pumps; 12.2p/kWh for biomass boilers; 18.8p/kWh for ground source heat pumps and at least 19.2 p/kWh for solar thermal.

    The new Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) for householders is designed to drive forward uptake of renewable heat technologies in homes across Great Britain to cut carbon, help meet renewables targets and save money on bills. The scheme is a world first, and has been up and running for the non – domestic sector since November 2011.

    Today’s announcement follows extensive consultation on how a financial incentive would work best for householders and takes into account lessons learned from the Renewable Heat Premium Payment grant scheme (RHPP) and the RHI non domestic scheme.

    reposted from sustainapedia.com


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  5. tresoc – Totnes Renewable Energy Society

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    TRESOC was set up by a group of  residents from Totnes and environs who were concerned about the threats of depleting global oil and gas supplies (peak oil) and the impacts of climate change.

    The current Board of Directors represents a positive complement of skills, local knowledge, experience, passion and commitment. They include people with skills that include management, finance, business law, marketing and communications.

    Their projects include wind, solar photovoltaic, anaerobic digestion and tidal power.

    It hasn’t been all plain sailing: their flagship project – for a two wind turbines – was rejected by council planners. Sixteen voted in favour of refusing the scheme, three were in favour and four abstained in the meeting at South Hams District Council.

    TRESOC’s aims are:

    • To develop the profitable supply of energy from renewable resources for the benefit of the community resident within Totnes and 15 surrounding Parishes
    • To ensure the democratic control of the renewable energy resources by the local community through the establishment of an extensive membership of the Society
    • To ensure that the maximum value from development of these resources shall be retained within the local economy.
    • To provide an opportunity for public-spirited people and organisations to contribute financially to the community with the expectation of a social dividend as well as a financial return


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  6. High Court on the side of wind turbines

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    Judge Quashes Milton Keynes Wind Turbine Planning Document

    In what could be a landmark ruling on local planning policy about wind turbines, the High Court ruled in favour of  a challenge by RWE npower renewables to the Milton Keynes Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) on Wind Turbines.

    The High Court has ruled that the way in which Milton Keynes Council imposed fixed separation distances between turbines and dwellings was introduced incorrectly, breaching Regulation 8(3) of the Town and Country Planning Regulations 2012.

    Dr Wayne Cranstone, RWE npower renewables onshore development and projects director said: “On the matter of buffer zone policies more generally, the Judge concluded that National Guidance “plainly indicates” that local authorities should not have a policy that planning permission for a wind turbine should be refused if a minimum separation distance is not met… We welcome the clarity the Court has brought to this matter, and we believe this will help both the wind industry and local authorities in determining appropriate policies for the siting of commercial wind farms”

    Commenting on the ruling, RenewableUK’s Deputy Chief Executive Maf Smith said: “We welcome today’s decision as it provides the wind industry with the certainty it needs to get on with the job of generating more clean electricity for British homes.

    “Many local councils are aware of the benefits of wind energy – onshore wind is a growth industry for the UK, bringing much needed jobs and investment. Every megawatt of wind energy we install generates £700,000 worth of value for the UK, of which £100,000 stays in the local area. In real terms this equates to contracts for local businesses and jobs for local people.

    “Wind energy also offers us an escape route from costly imports of fossil fuels, by generating power from a home-grown resource which will never run out. This gives us a valuable prize: energy security. Onshore wind is the most cost-effective form of renewable energy we have, so we should be using it as widely as possible to protect all of us against soaring electricity bills.

    “RenewableUK strongly believes it’s inappropriate for councils to impose arbitrary limits on where renewable energy projects should be located. Blanket bans and buffer zones are blunt instruments which take no account of local conditions. Each proposal should be examined on a case by case basis so that a well-balanced decision can be reached. As two-thirds of the British public consistently support wind energy, their views should be given due weight in the democratic process”.
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  7. Marshfield School wind turbine is back in business!

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    Marshfield School’s Proven P35-2 wind turbine, funded through PTA and other locally raised contributions as well as grants from EDF and LCBP, was recommissioned in January 2013. The school has already received a quarterly Feed in Tariff payment for energy generated, and is on track again to generate 50% of its annual electricity consumption.

    The wind turbine was commissioned in February 2011. In September that year Proven identified a technical problem and advised that the turbine should be stopped until it could be resolved under warranty. Unfortunately funder  support was withdrawn from Proven and the company went into receivership.

    Whilst the business of selling new turbines was sold to Kingspan, the warranties for existing turbines were not included in the sale.  A Scottish operator, with a large number of Proven turbines, developed a repair for their own machines and eventually gained MCS approval and capacity to offer the repair to other operators.

    The School joined the queue and the turbine was repaired and recommissioned in January 2013.

    The repair cost was generously funded by EDF after some prompting from our MP Steve Webb, and heavy lifting equipment was provided, at no cost, by M.J. Church.

    Story by Tony Kerr
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