Yearly Archives: 2012

/2012

New Edinburgh base for Fine Energy

Wind energy specialist Fine Energy now has a base in Edinburgh. The company rents land from businesses with space for one or more small-scale wind turbines. The new premises are needed to service growing demand for its services across Scotland.

Fine Energy is committed to helping Scotland reach its target of 80% renewable electricity by 2020. Their focus is on distributed energy projects with minimal impact on the landscape, the grid and neighbouring properties. Backed by Endurance Wind Power, the company is currently screening large numbers of sites for public and private sector organisations across the UK.

Dave Rankin, Managing Director of Endurance Wind Power UK, said “With its abundance of wind resource, Scotland is a natural home for our small, quiet Endurance E-3120 turbine. We already have some important installations in Scotland and we will be supporting Fine Energy in securing further suitable sites”.

Fine Energy works with businesses and individual landowners who are looking to rent out their land for wind energy. As well as earning an assured rent for 20 years with no investment required, landowners benefit from a yield-dependent bonus, and can reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs.

Alex Salmond Keynote Speaker – All Energy exhibition, Aberdeen

Alex Salmond MSP, First Minister of Scotland, will be the keynote speaker at All Energy, the UK’s largest renewable energy exhibition and conference to be held 23 – 24 May at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre.

The full gamut of renewable energy will be represented – visitors will be able to follow ‘sector-specific trails’ designed to help maximise their time.

Last year’s All Energy show drew visitors from more than 50 countries with attendance at the show being free of charge.

Fine Energy will be exhibiting at this year’s exhibition and will feature in the onshore wind and on-site renewables trails – we’re looking forward to welcoming visitors at stand D78.

Scotland’s Record-breaking Renewables

Wind energy has more than doubled since 2007 and was at a record high of 7,049 GWh in 2011, recent figures show – an increase of 45% from 2010 levels.

As Energy Minister Fergus Ewing said,

“It’s official – 2011 was a record-breaker, with enough green electricity being produced in Scotland to comfortably beat our interim target”.

Renewable energy as a whole was also at an all-time high in Scotland at 13,750 GWh, up 44.5% from 2010.

The statistics, along with Scottish Renewables’ report assigning 11,000 jobs directly to the growth of the renewables sector, confirms that Scotland is reaping a rich, renewables harvest.

Budget 2012 – Increased Support for UK Renewables Sector

In his 2012 Budget, George Osborne gave his strongest support to date for the UK’s renewable energy sector. Clearly stating that he would like to see increased investment in renewables, he also underlined that the government’s National Infrastructure Plan highlights clear priorities for investment in clean energy, and water.

Osborne continued that the renewable energy sector will be supported by UK government and that “renewable energy will play a crucial part in Britain’s energy mix” but that he will aim to protect bill payers by being “alert to the costs we are asking families and businesses to bear”.

Plans to introduce a carbon floor price from April 2013, make the UK the first country to take such a step. This is designed to provide businesses with the guarantee that the price of carbon will not drop below a prescribed level.

He also confirmed that a “presumption in favour of sustainable development” will be included in the National Planning Policy Framework to be published 27th March 2012.

Flying in the face of the myths? – wind turbines and birds

Leo Hickman, writing recently in The Guardian, aims to dispel the myths about avian mortality due to collisions with wind turbines.

He cites the Centre of Sustainable Energy who state “Wind turbines represent an insignificant fraction of the total number of bird deaths caused by manmade objects or activities” and notes that the CSE estimate that for every bird killed by a turbine, 5,820 on average are killed colliding with buildings, typically glass windows.

Perhaps a more emphatic rebuttal of the risk caused to birds is the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds’ position on wind energy. They “Strongly support renewable energy as well as other low carbon means of generating energy” and say that currently “We have had to place sustained objections on only 5.9% of wind farm proposals”.

Furthermore, the risk to birds decreases in the case of ‘distributed wind’, as installed by companies like Fine Energy, where one or two turbines per project are erected in contrast to the banks of turbines installed on wind farms.

UK planning laws now mean that bird assessments must be carried out as part of the application process. Adhering respectfully to these requirements in affected areas, wind energy can contribute more safely to the UK’s legal duty to meet its annual carbon budget.