An energy project near Larne, County Antrim, has obtained more multi-million pound funding from the European Union. The project, being developed by Gaelectric, will store energy in the form of compressed air in underground caverns created within geological salt deposits on the Islandmagee peninsula. Financing totalling 8.2m euros (£6.9m) covers the drilling of an appraisal well and detailed studies into the design and commercial structure of the project. It previously was awarded EU funding of 6.5m euros (£5.4M) in 2015. The company said the project would provide generation capacity of 330mw for periods of up eight hours duration, enough to meet the electricity needs of more than 200,000 homes.
BBC 1st Aug 2016 read more »
PLANS for a renewables storage scheme on the Isle of Lewis which could power 200,000 homes will be unveiled today. The proposals from Eishken Limited would see a battery-style installation built next to a windfarm on the island which would be capable of generating 300 megawatts (MW) of electricity. The large pumped storage hydro (PSH) scheme will store electricity, principally generated by windfarms on Lewis. It will also double the use of the Western Isles Link, the cable being installed by the National Grid to export and import electricity generated from renewable energy sources on the islands.
Herald 23rd Aug 2016 read more »
The hydropower industry is at a “crossroads” with future projects threatened by a cut in UK subsidies, Scotland’s Energy Minister has said. Paul Wheelhouse has called on the UK Government to “work closely” with him to secure funding and jobs in rural areas. He was speaking as he visited a pumped hydro storage plant at Foyers, near Loch Ness, which can store electricity at times when renewable energy output is high but demand is low. Mr Wheelhouse said: “Hydro generation in 2015 was at a record high level – 5,780 GWh, up 6.3% on 2014. “But the hydro sector is at a crossroads with a number of exciting developments opening, but with some future investments, especially in small-scale hydro, at risk due to changes in subsidies brought in by the UK Government, putting jobs at risk in many rural communities. “Pumped hydro storage – like the facility I have seen today in Foyers – is a case in point. This tried and tested technology can play a key role in enhancing energy security, providing local jobs and helping to integrate renewables on to the network. “As well as being able to further support peak demand, expanded pumped hydro storage would also be able to effectively store greater levels of electricity at times when renewable energy output is high but demand is low. “However, this part of the hydropower industry requires substantial Government support – not the kind of extra hurdles that changes in subsidies from the UK Government have put in place. That is why I am using this visit to urge the UK Government to do all that it can to support the real and continued potential in this energy resource.”
Herald 23rd Aug 2016 read more »
Scottish Energy News 23rd Aug 2016 read more »
The Scottish energy minister says that the hydropower industry is at a crossroads. Paul Wheelhouse called for greater co-operation with Westminster while visiting a pumped hydro storage plant at Foyers, near Loch Ness. He said: “The hydro sector is at a crossroads with a number of exciting developments opening but with some future investments . . . at risk due to changes in subsidies brought in by the UK government, putting jobs at risk in rural communities.” He said that hydro generation was at a record level and laid out the case for greater investment in the use of pumped storage, which can hold more electricity at times when renewable energy generation is high but demand is low. “However . . . it requires substantial government support.” Pumped storage stores water in reservoirs at different altitudes. It is released from the higher level to work turbines and generate electricity. It can then be pumped back. ScottishPower said it would cost at least £300 million to double the capacity of its pumped storage station near Oban.
Times 24th Aug 2016 read more »
Energy Voice 23rd Aug 2016 read more »
BOTH the SNP and Scottish Greens have urged the UK Government to develop a national renewable energy storage strategy for wind power and hydro power. The plan originally announced by SNP energy spokesman Callum McCaig was supported by Mike Ruskell of the Scottish Greens in addition to his party’s own suggestions. The SNP called for stability in the renewables market and a plan for incentives for green energy while the Scottish Green Party emphasised the actions the Scottish Government could make, such as a greater push toward community-owned energy projects. Callum McCaig, SNP MP and spokesperson for energy and climate at Westminster, said: “For the potential of renewable energy to be fully realised we will continue to need newer and better storage technologies; mastering that is the solution to making renewables as attractive financially as they are environmentally. The Scottish Government in addition to this will set its goal for renewables to supply half the country’s energy by the year 2030. McCaig has also urged the UK energy secretary, Greg Clarke to implement a “stable framework” to ensure stability for investment and guarantee support for projects like the proposed 400 mega watt Cruachan pump hydro energy storage scheme and the Coire Glas scheme.
CommonSpace 23rd Aug 2016 read more »