Dr Richard Dixon director of Friends of the Earth Scotland: Half of Scotland’s nuclear reactors are off-line over safety concerns, but the lights still stayed on. Nuclear power is the ultimate unsustainable form of energy. For some electricity today, we are leaving a thousand generations of future humans dangerous radioactive waste. The politics of Scotland mean that new reactors here are almost unthinkable and the price of the renewable energy alternatives has fallen so far below the cost of nuclear that you would have to be crazy to go for new nuclear. Labour’s Jack McConnell was the First Minister who said he would block new nuclear plants until there was a solution to the waste problem (14 years later, there is none). And while it is in the SNP’s DNA to oppose nuclear power. EDF and some unions do still try to lobby Scottish Ministers and officials, but to no avail. Meanwhile the industry is doing a great job of showing how terrible a bet nuclear is. The nuclear industry is almost unique in that every new reactor costs more than the last, while everything else gets cheaper, including offshore wind power which is now coming in at just over half the price of nuclear for a unit of energy. Hinkley Point C, the only nuclear station under construction in the UK, was supposed to be cooking the Christmas turkey in 2017. It is now expected to be producing electricity at the end of 2025 at the earliest. The only way it could be built was for the UK Government to agree that electricity consumers would pay bills well over the odds for the next 35 years. Did you notice the lights going out across Scotland with Hunterston not producing a single electron for eight months? No, thanks largely to renewables having a record first quarter of 2019 and supplying nine out of ten households in Scotland. We certainly don’t need new nuclear and, with renewables rapidly on the rise, we should not take the unnecessary risk of starting up the Hunterston reactors ever again.
Scotsman 2nd July 2019 read more »
A Finnish renewable energy boss has said that Scotland “can easily” reach 100% renewable energy if it embraces flexibility. Melle Kruisdijk, vice president in Europe for Wartsila Energy Business, said Scotland should harness its abundance of wind energy to reach a total renewable energy mix. Finnish firm Wartsila, who has 70 gigawatts of installed power plant capacity over 177 countries, are an energy system integrator who are looking to facilitate the switch to 100% renewable energy through the switch from fossil fuels to synthetic methane gas. Mr Kruisdijk claims the switch could be at hand, but that each country will transition at a different speed. He said: “I think it’ll be faster than we all think. Mr Kruisdijk believes the pathway to 100% renewable energy can only be quickly established with the aid of flexibility, something Wartsila are hoping to implement with the use of synthetic gas when intermittency is present in the grid. He said: “Renewables are intermittent by nature because they’re weather dependent, so how do you get a stable power system? “It’s where the flexibility comes in. The more renewables you have the more flexibility you have. “To give an example, we have in our portfolio engine power plants that can ramp up from stand-still to full load in two minutes, provide the power needed, then go back to stand-still within one minute. “What that means is that you can have this plant sitting somewhere on the grid at a convenient location and as soon as you get a fluctuation in renewables this plant can ramp up in an instant and provide energy. “The cost of renewable energy sources are dropping so it makes sense to go there now which drives the need for flexibility.”
Energy Voice 2nd July 2019 read more »
Electric bin lorries, e-cargo bikes, district heating systems, and LED floodlights are just some of the 24 projects in Scotland to have been awarded a share of £10m in funding today designed to help accelerate the growth of the country’s green economy. Scotland’s network operator, SP Energy Networks, announced the new wave of awards from its Green Economy Fund will go towards a range of schemes designed to cut emissions and air pollution, grow Scotland’s local economy, and benefit communities. Winning schemes include Scotland’s first electric cargo bike delivery service in Glasgow, an educational hub for businesses and students to learn about energy efficiency, and five ‘micro district heating networks’ backed by batteries, which will provide heat for up to 20 properties each in Central Scotland.
Business Green 1st July 2019 read more »