Renew On Line (UK) 69

Extracts from NATTA's journal
Renew, Issue 169 Sept-Oct 2007
   Welcome   Archives   Bulletin         


1. UK takes a lead on offshore wind

2. Biofuels – good or bad?

3. Tidal Surges - and wave too

4. After the Energy White Paper

5. Energy Policy developments

6. Domestic Energy plans go awry

7. New Waste Recycling plan

8. World Developments

9. EU Developments

10. Around the world

11. Nuclear developments

1. UK takes a lead on offshore wind  

The first of two 85 metre high 5 megawatt (MW) wind turbines has been installed in deep water in the Beatrice field site 25 km off the east coast of Scotland.  It’s the worlds largest in offshore deep water, and is generating electricity for the nearby Beatrice platform.

The second turbine will be installed nearby soon to complete the project.  

In addition, Farm Energy have plans to build the world’s largest offshore wind farm off the coast of North Devon - the £3bn 1.5 gigawatt (GW) Atlantic Array with 350 turbines. Farm Energy is already involved with curently the world’s largest offshore farm, the 1GW London Array project in the Thames Estuary. It told Reuters that it hopes the proposed more streamlined UK planning system will help its new plan become a reality more quickly.  

Farm Energy director Michael Huntingford said ‘We feel that its very early days... We are consulting early because we understand how long these projects take to come to fruition. The London Array is probably in its tenth or ninth year. I think the new planning system would have helped enormously for the London Array and I do hope that there is a more sensible approach for projects of national significance.’

Devon County Councils strategic planning director, Humphrey Temperley said: ‘The proposal represents the best opportunity for the local economy in northern Devon in a decade’.  

Danish state-controlled DONG Energy, one of the developers of the Thames Estuary project, is expected to team up with Farm Energy again for the Atlantic Array.  

This project would clearly put the UK well ahead in the offshore wind field- with more offshore capacity than anyone else. But the race is on. Norsk Hydro and German engineering firm Siemens have teamed up to test a prototype of a floating offshore wind turbine system which they hope to install, at a cost of $34m, in the North Sea in 2009.   That’s two years’ later than hoped when Hydro unveiled a floating design in 2005. It can operate is deeper water, and if tests of the 5 MW turbine are successful, they say a small offshore wind park could be built around 2013-14.

 On-land opposition

Meanwhile though, progress on land is slow. Chris Tomlinson from the British Wind Energy Association, writing in Power UK, March, pointed out that 8,000 MW of onshore projects are still trapped in the planning system and only five of the last 16 public inquiries have ruled in favour of wind farms, and ‘approval rates since the Stern report have plummeted to the lowest level since the first wind farm was commissioned in 1991, now standing at just 33%’. Maybe the proposed new planning regime will help?

NATTA/Renew Subscription Details

Renew is the bi-monthly 30 plus page newsletter of NATTA, the Network for Alternative Technology and Technology Assessment. NATTA members gets Renew free. NATTA membership cost £18 pa (waged) £12pa (unwaged), £6 pa airmail supplement (Please make cheques payable to 'The Open University', NOT to 'NATTA')

Details from NATTA , c/o EERU,
The Open University,
Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA
Tel: 01908 65 4638 (24 hrs)

The full 32 (plus) page journal can be obtained on subscription
The extracts here only represent about 25% of it.

This material can be freely used as long as it is not for commercial purposes and full credit is given to its source.

The views expressed should not be taken to necessarily reflect the views of all NATTA members, EERU or the Open University.

We are now offering to e-mail subscribers a PDF version of the complete Renew, instead  of sending them the printed version, should they wish.