Renew On Line (UK) 60
Extracts from NATTA's journal
|Welcome Archives Bulletin|
6. Microgen for all
Self-generation of energy from small scale renewables in homes and schools can not only help reduce emissions, it also has spin-off in terms of creating positive attitude to further improvements in energy use, since it makes the issues and the benefits of change tangible, according to a new report ‘Seeing the light: the impact of micro-generation on the way we use energy,’ from the Sustainable Consumption Roundtable. Their survey of mainstream households without microgen installed found that most respondents did not link climate change with their own behaviour, whereas homes with microgen were ‘able not only to understand, but control their energy consumption, resulting in lower bills and a zeal for saving energy throughout the home’.
The Roundtable, which is a joint initiative of the National Consumer
Council and the Sustainable Development Commission, said it was ‘convinced
that significant and sustained progress will not be made towards the
* Some support for this approach came from energy minister Malcolm Wicks: “The climate change challenge is not just about national or global targets, new initiatives or new technologies; it is also about winning hearts and minds, especially young hearts and young minds. Imagine one day, every school with its own micro wind turbine and/or state of the art solar panelling.”
The DTI is launching a classroom-based initiative to teach young people about renewables and the role of green power and green heat technologies in reducing carbon emissions. The ‘It’s only natural’ education programme has lessons for three student groups, from ages 5 to 18, and a website with information.
The Low Carbon Building Programme is seen as part of the Micropower strategy. Malcolm Wicks said: “The installation of microgeneration products such as micro-turbines, solar panels and air source heat pumps are an excellent way for individuals, communities and businesses to make their own contribution to tackling climate change. As these become more widespread they can help to teach children and future generations about the benefits of renewable energy and the way to use our resources more responsibly. The LCBP will be designed to take a holistic approach to reducing carbon emissions from buildings by combining innovative combinations of micro-renewable technologies and energy efficiency measures. As well as continuing to fund single installations, the programmes will fund large-scale developments in the public and private sectors. Potential beneficiaries could include schools, leisure centres or even remote villages that are not connected to the grid.”
* The message that we might benefit from micropower/locally
embedded generation may be getting through. In answer to another
Parliamentary Question on Dec 2nd, on ‘how much electricity in megawatts
was lost to heat from the national grid in each year since 2000’,
Malcolm Wicks reported that: ‘heat is energy and may be expressed
in watt-hours, rather than in megawatts, which are units of power’
and supplied the following data: 2000-01: 4,750,000; 2001-02: 4,370,000;
2002-03: 4,330,000; 2003-04: 4,510,000; 2004-05: 4,450,000. That’s well
over 10% of total
The Government has broadly supported Mark Lazarowicz’s Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Private Member’s Bill, and in addition to seeking amendments to adjust the arrangements for limiting transmission costs for the Scottish Isles (see Renew 159), it wants to use it to simplify the issue of the Renewables Obligation Certificates for microgenerators by allowing agents to amalgamate their output e.g. collect ROCs on behalf of individual domestic generators. It will also remove the requirement for a sale and buy-back agreement. Currently self-generators must sell their output to a supplier before buying it back for their own consumption!
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