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Sustainable Energy

Caithness Heat And Power Ltd
The new company set up by Highland Council will supply unlimited heat and hot water to homes initially in the Pulteneytown area of Wick in Caithness.  The fuels source will be wood.  The first supplies to homes will be switch on in 2006 and gradually spread around the area. 

Advanced Transport Systems
ULTra (Urban Light Transport) offers an advanced form of personal rapid transit, ready for application, giving effective, low cost and sustainable transport for cities, airports and special developments worldwide. The vehicle is powered by a battery pack that can be recharged when the vehicles are stationary.

HelioDynamics is developing and selling its Harmony Concentrating Solar Power systems worldwide. The Harmony system uses inexpensive glass mirrors to focus a large area of incoming sunlight on to a small area of receiver. The system can be assembled to provide either PV electricity and heat together or, if industrial grade high temperature heat is desired, heat alone, at up to 300 º c. HelioDynamics has operations in both the UK and US.

Lunar Energy
Lunar Energy is developing a business based around the extraction of energy from Ocean Tidal Streams to generate electricity. The cost of the electricity will be competitive with conventional forms of power generation. The technology is being developed by Lunar's technical collaborator Rotech Engineering Ltd. By incorporating proven technology from other commercial sectors such as oil and gas (fabrication and installation) Lunar's technology is predictable, invisible and economic.


West Midlands Higher Education Association (WMHEA)
13 universities in the English West Midlands work together under an umbrella organisation called the WMHEA, which aims to help local companies access the innovation capacity within university departments and labs. This includes co-ordination of regional technology transfer. WMHEA provides an intelligence gateway to higher education in the region and facilitates the development and delivery of collaborative policies and projects. The universities play a major role working with West Midlands small to medium sized enterprises, including those in the sustainable energy sector.
Case Studies: http://www.mydev.co.uk/CaseStudies/tabid/180/Default.aspx

PURE Energy Centre
The PURE Energy Centre was established on the back of the PURE Project which in 2005, delivered a zero emissions, off-grid renewable hydrogen hybrid power supply to an industrial estate on the most northerly island in the UK. The PURE Energy Centre premises incorporate high and low cost stored renewable energy (hydrogen and thermal) as well as providing a fuelling station for the UK’s only road licensed renewable H2 fuel cell car. The PURE Energy Centre offers a range of support services and commercial products, including specialist residential training courses, an R&D facility, consultancy and advisory services and hydrogen/oxygen production units (“hypods”) which can accommodate any renewable energy input, and deliver a hydrogen output. These services make renewable hydrogen solutions accessible to communities worldwide.

Wavebob Ltd.
Based in Northern Ireland, Wavebob is developing a unique off-shore wave energy converter, targeting the commercial exploitation of the huge renewable energy resource available in the world's oceans. Wavebob devices will be deployed in arrays 5-10km offshore and will not be visible from the shore. Each device will typically be rated at over 1MW and will generate electricity over a 20-year life. The company has installed a prototype Wavebob at the Marine Institute's 'Galway Bay Wave Energy test site' and is in discussions with various renewable energy generators interested in developing Wavebob wave farms. Work on site identification and assessment is underway at a number of promising Atlantic-facing locations.

The Energy Challenge
In July the United Kingdom Government announced the Energy Review Report 2006. The report addresses the “Energy Challenge: securing clean, affordable energy for the long term” and sets out the measures needed by 2020 and beyond to meet the UK’s energy and climate change goals.

The Climate Action Programme
The UK is on course to exceed its target under the Kyoto Protocol (i,e. to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 12.5% on 1990 levels throughout the period 2008 -2012). It has also set a national goal of reducing carbon emissions by 60% by 2050). A new UK Climate Change Programme was published in March 2006. This followed an extensive review, launched in September 2004, of the existing Programme.

3. Renewable Energy Policy
The UK Government has proposed a range of policies to boost renewables investment. These include extending the level of the Renewables Obligation up to 20% – a five-fold increase on today’s level - and potentially reshaping the Renewables Obligation by banding the support to give more benefit to emerging technologies such as offshore wind, wave and tidal projects. The Government will also consider changes in the planning inquiry rules to help reduce planning delays to renewable projects.

The Renewables Obligation (RO) is the key support mechanism for the expansion of renewable energy. It is due to run until 2026-2027. It has succeeded in bringing forward major developments in the most economic forms of renewable energy, in particular on shore wind, landfill gas, and co-firing of biomass in coal power stations. The cost of the RO is met by electricity consumers.

Alternative Transport Fuels
The Government has also proposed a Transport Innovation Strategy that will help to bring forward cleaner technologies and fuels. The Government intends that the level of the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation should rise above 5% after 2010/2011.

Existing Support for Renewable Energy Programmes
Prior to the 2006 review the UK government had already committed to investing around £500 million between 2002 and 2008 as follows:

    • £50 million Marine Renewables Deployment Fund
    • £117 million for offshore wind
    • £66 million for biomass
    • The Low carbon Buildings programme which encourages microgeneration installations,
       has a 3yr £80 million funding package
    • The Department of Trade and Industry Technology Programme is also providing £20        million a year for collaborative research & development and Research Council funding of        £99 million over 6 years for generation and efficiency technologies (including £48 for        nuclear fusion)
    • The Carbon Trust which is government funded, invests £25 million a year in the        development of new technologies and supports deployment of existing technologies by        providing tax breaks equivalent to £150 million per year.

United Kingdom and California Announcement on Climate Change and Clean Energy Collaboration
On 31 July Prime Minister Tony Blair and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger announced a commitment to deepen UK – CA collaboration on climate change and clean energy issues.

To view the agreement visit:

Some of the Key UK Renewable Energy Sources
Wind Power
With enough potential offshore wind resources to power the country three times over, the UK is poised to develop the most innovative technologies to harness and use offshore wind energy. In fact, The Ernst & Young Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index ranks the UK number one in the world for Wind Energy.

In terms of current opportunities, some 7000 megawatts of offshore wind capacity was recently licensed in a plan which involves the development of 18 wind farms utilizing 1000 turbines, valued at over $12 billion dollars. This predicted expansion is generating an unprecedented demand for more wind energy research, technologies and services.

Marine & Tidal Energy
The UK has long been a world leader in tidal and wave energy. For example, the world’s first commercial grid-connected wave-power station was erected in Islay, Scotland. Over 40% of the UK’s renewable energy today is provided by hydropower with the newest applications involving wave and tidal energy. Because of the direction of the prevailing winds and the size of the Atlantic Ocean, the UK has wave-power levels that are among the highest in the world.

A new $8.6 million test center for wave generation conversion systems—the European Marine Energy Center (EMEC)—became operational in late 2003 on Orkney Islands. The EMEC will make performance assessments of wave energy devices, determine the feasibility of mass production of marine energy, and act as a focal point for linked R&D.

Bioenergy currently accounts for 86 percent of the UK’s electricity supply from renewable energy sources. Bioenergy applications in the UK include energy crops, agricultural by-products, landfill gas and domestic green waste. In fact, the UK boasts the world’s first three power stations fueled by chicken litter. The UK also has a large volume of landfill sites and leads Europe in installed capacity of electricity plants which exploit landfill gas.

The UK Department of Trade & Investment (DTI) and the New Opportunities Fund recently developed a three-year bioenergy Capital Grant Scheme which will provide $110 million in grant funding for project developers and organizations investing in heat or electricity generating projects fueled by energy crops and other biomass feedstocks.

Solar Power
The UK offers a wealth of solar-power research capabilities to support technology and business development. More than 30 university departments are engaged in solar research, and the government aims to achieve 20 megawatts of installed solar photovoltaic capacity by 2005 and 200 megawatts by 2012. The Government also has boosted grant funding, including the $34 million Major Photovoltaic Demonstration Program, to drive the creation of different applications of PV technology and new business opportunities and applications for the UK.

Impressing The World
The London 2012 Olympic games will provide a platform for the UK to display these capabilities to the world. Set to be the most sustainable games ever, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic games has undertaken to channel a substantial portion of the investment programme into low carbon and renewable energy infrastructure.

Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA)

Department of Trade & Industry - Energy

Department of Trade & Industry - Carbon Abatement Technologies Strategy

DTI Renewable Energy

Research Councils

Britain USA - Energy & Environment Pages

Centres of Excellence
Centre for Excellence For Low Carbon & Fuel Cell Technologies - CENEX
Cenex is an industry-led public-private partnership set up with the aim of assisting UK industry to build competitive advantage from the global shift to a low carbon economy. It supports innovation through a Knowledge Transfer Network dedicated to low carbon and fuel cell technologies and through brokering a programme of activities focused on technology demonstration, targeting early market adoption and supply chain development. By encouraging the early market adoption of low carbon and fuel cell technologies in automotive applications, Cenex will assist UK industry to develop a supply chain capable of competing in global markets, as well as showcasing UK expertise to encourage further inward investment.

Energy Research Unit (ERU)
Established over 20 years ago at Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, the ERU has an international reputation in energy research. Its test site facility includes two major experimental wind turbines, two diesel generators, two flywheels, battery storage, a photovoltaic panel and three meteoroligical masts.

The Hadley Center for Climate Prediction and Research
One of the world's premier climate change research facilities, the Hadley Center provides a focus in the UK for scientific issues associated with climate change. The center aims to understand physical, chemical, and biological processes within the climate system and develop state-of-the-art climate models which represent then to help predict changes over the next 100 years.

Tyndall Center for Climate Change Research
This centre opened by the Research Councils allows scientists, engineers and social scientists to study climate change and develop the most appropriate response to it.

New and Renewable Research Centre (NaREC)
A partnership between the regional development agency, the region's university and the private sector, the Centre's main purpose is to fast track new and renewable R&D through to commercial use. It focuses on wind, wave, tidal, solar, biomass and clean fuel energies and includes a wave machine for testing new tidal generators unique in Europe.

UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC)
The UK Energy Research Centre's mission is to be the UK's pre-eminent centre of research, and source of authoritative information and leadership, on sustainable energy systems.
The Centre was established in 2004 following a recommendation from the 2002 review of energy initiated by Sir David King, the UK Government’s Chief Scientific Advisor.
It is a central part of the £28 million cross-Research Councils programme Towards a Sustainable Energy Economy (TSEC) and is funded by three research councils: the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

The Carbon Trust
Launched in April 2001, the Carbon Trust develops and implements programs to accelerate the take-up of energy efficiency in the non-domestic sector. These include the 'Action Energy' information and advice service; an interest free loan scheme for small businesses; and a funding program to stimulate innovation in new low-carbon technologies.

Integration of New and Renewable Energy in Buildings (INREB)
The INREB provides a national focus for industry projects, technology transfer and research projects on the integration of new and renewable energy in buildings. The Building Research Establishment leads the project -experts in building technology - in collaboration with four world class academic research groups at De Montfort, Loughborough, Nottingham and Ulster Universities.

British Wind Energy Association: Promotes excellence in wind energy research, development and deployment

Offshore Wind Energy Network: Promotes excellence in wind energy research on all issues connected with the development of Britain's offshore wind resource and encourages partnership between commercial organisations and researchers.

British Photovoltaic Association: Advances the development of PV technologies and systems and promotes their use in Britain and around the world.

Solar Trade Association: Promotes widespread use of solar energy technology and encourages excellence within the UK solar energy industry.

British Hydropower Association: Trade association representing the interest of all those involved in the hydropower industry.

Environmental Services Association: Major trade association for the UK waste management industry.

Scottish Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Association

Renewable Power Association

Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership

Centre for Sustainable Energy

Institute of Energy

Business Council for Sustainable Energy UK

See Also
Atomic Energy
British Energy
Institute of Civil Engineers