Renew On Line (UK) 60
Extracts from NATTA's journal
|Welcome Archives Bulletin|
2. Marine renewables
1MW MCT Tidal Turbine
Marine Current Turbines is to install a 1 megawatt Seagen
tidal current turbine in
Prof. Peter Fraenkel, MCT’s Technical Director, said that their work with the SeaFlow had ‘shown that it is possible to generate power in a hostile marine environment and to have a negligible effect on marine life. Strangford Lough will demonstrate whether SeaGen has the commercial potential whilst safeguarding the marine environment.’
MCT’s Martin Wright added: ‘As a company dedicated to developing a benign, sustainable form of power generation for the future, we take our responsibilities towards the environment very seriously. Consequently, together with Royal Haskoning, we have carried out one of the most comprehensive and exacting environmental assessments ever done for SeaGen’s installation in Strangford Lough.’
Royal Haskoning, said: ‘We recognise the sensitivity of the location, and so have worked with EHS and conservation bodies to agree an adaptive and extensive approach to the management and environmental monitoring of SeaGen’s installation and operation’.
As follow-up tidal farm projects, MCT is looking at sites for 10MW arrays off the N.Devon (Lynmouth again) and Welsh coasts.
*The Carbon Trusts new report on Marine Energy claims that ultimately
wave and tidal current technology could supply up to 20% of
Wave Dragon for
The Danish Wave dragon device may be used for a wave energy
project off Pembrokeshire near Milford Haven in the spring of 2007,
if a bid to the Welsh European Funding Office by KP Renewables and Wave
Dragon Limited, for £5m in EU Objective 1 funding for the first stage
of the scheme, is successful. Wave dragon is a Danish floating device,
moored to the sea bed, that channels waves into a reservoir above sea
level and uses the head of water to drive turbines to generate power.
Under phase one of the scheme, which will cost around £12m, one 7MW
unit capable of generating enough electricity for up to 6,000 homes
would be tested at West Dale Bay. If it passes environmental impact
and other regulatory assessments, the aim is to locate up to 11 units,
with a total of 70MW generating capacity, in deeper water 10 miles off
The government has outlined the consents process for wave and tidal
demonstration projects in
Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks said: ‘This consenting guidance together
with the previously announced £50m package of financial support gives
the marine renewables sector an opportunity to develop. We look forward
to the evolution of a world-class
The DTI says it has ‘worked intensively with industry, stakeholders and across Government in the last six months to produce guidance that meet the needs of business by promoting progress while allowing concerns about the possible impact of devices on other users of the sea and on the environment to be properly monitored and evaluated’.
It adds ‘The guidance contains no explicit constraints on site choice, duration and scale of demonstration projects. Pre-commercial or demonstration project managers will be required to follow the normal process for energy developments. They will be asked to produce project-specific Environmental Impact Assessments. The level of detail of the EIA will be proportionate to the risk and scale of potential impacts. There will be no need for a Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA) for the time being. DTI believes that knowledge gained from monitoring & research in the demonstration phase will allow a thorough & more valuable SEA to be conducted prior to a commercial phase.’
npower is to provide £50,000 funding
via its ‘Juice’ scheme to the BWEA for a project that will provide a
‘route map’ for the future of wave and tidal stream development around
The project funding will be provided through the npower Juice Fund, which is backed by Greenpeace and has been set up specifically to aid the development of emerging renewable technologies such as wave and tidal power. The hope is that it can help to move from prototype deployment to commercial reality.
Michael Hay, the BWEA’s Marine Renewables Development Manager, said: “This project will be vital in ensuring that we reach a consensus on the location requirements for marine renewables over the coming years whilst highlighting what measures will need to be put in place to bring projects towards commercial reality. In doing this it will also set out the requirements for the marine renewables sector at a critical time in the debate surrounding the Marine Bill and Marine Spatial Planning.”
Wayne Cranstone of npower said: “This study is exactly the type of initiative the npower Juice Fund was designed to support, as it will help bring this exciting new industry another step closer to commercial reality. npower is proud to be funding this project and we look forward to seeing the results next spring. It is important to us and to our Juice customers to encourage the development of new renewable technologies, such as wave and tidal power, to help in the fight against climate change. The Government has set challenging targets for the development of renewable energy. Onshore wind farms, hydroelectric power stations and biomass projects will help us meet the short term targets of supplying 10% of our electricity from renewable sources by 2010. We also need large scale offshore wind farms and marine technologies to be developed as quickly as possible in order to help meet long term renewables targets.”
* npower is on the the UK’s big three power producers, and its offshoot, npower renewables, is one of the UK’s leading renewable energy developers and operators with a portfolio of 15 wind farms and 12 hydroelectric projects.
Eco-gains: Severn Barrage
A reappraisal of the Severn Tidal barrage concept has suggested that, far from being an ecological problem, the Barrage could dramatically improve the estuarine environment. According to a report in the latest issue (158 ES1) of the Institution of Civil Engineers’ Engineering Sustainability journal, construction of a 16 km long tidal power barrage across the Severn Estuary would dramatically improve what is currently a barren and inhospitable estuarine environment.
The 1989 plans for a 8.6 GW tidal power plant- capable of providing
7% of the
They point out that ‘The estuary is designated a proposed Special Area of Conservation because of its extreme and unproductive environment. The barrage would destroy those characteristics, instead making it ecologically habitable while realising 50% of the Government’s renewable energy target for the year 2015.’
They claim that ‘should a barrage be built, mean water levels and shelter would increase and current strengths would diminish,’ so that ‘mixed substrates would develop, leading to biodiverse and abundant invertebrate and vertebrate communities’.
They conclude ‘the Government’s hesitation towards the Severn Barrage on environmental grounds is hard to comprehend. In the interests of all affected parties, and there is a large number of these with diverse backgrounds and life-forms, the authors believe this reservation must either be justified or withdrawn.’
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