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The truths they don't want you to read....

Friday, September 05, 2008

Lawnmowers of the sea?

Wave power around the British IslesThe article in Thursday's Guardian on underwater turbines makes for very interesting reading.

We should be the automatic choice for the location of any test turbines; just look at the sea colours in the picture - the deeper the colour the better the resource.

But, without a grid connection, we aren't going to be in the running for this.

The prospect with one of the onshore windfarms is to get that grid connection, and then to be able to exploit the connection for other alternatives which could mean that onshore wind then itself becomes an obsolete technology.

That prospect is around the corner - and is an aspiration of the Scottish Government - and we must make sure that the wave resource of the west coast is used to benefit the entire community.


Anonymous said...

I am sorry but you appear to be confused about the current SHETL interconnector proposals.

Transmission upgrades in the UK progress on the basis of private connection agreements between developers and the grid operator, which secure access to the UK grid system. The current interconnector proposal is linked to the SSE Pairc Windfarm and Beinn Mhor Power Muaitheabhal Windfarm, there is also some additional community windfarm capacity providing a combined capacity of around 450MW. Obviously the Muaitheabhal windfarm is never going to progress at 300MW, as per the connection agreement, but the implications for the interconnector project are not clear at this point.

The interconnector and the space on the UK grid on the mainland side are linked to these projects and only these projects. No other grid agreements are in existence, and any future generation projects will be constrained by the available space on the mainland system.

They will have to apply for connections, enter into similar grid agreements if space is available and join the queue. Alternatively additional transmission upgrades may be initiated.

Whether any of it will ultimately go ahead will be up to OFGEM. They will decide whether the additional burden on the consumer, which will result from the cost of the Western Isles transmission upgrades is in the wider national interest.

As there is now a growing concern that current energy policy and windfarms in particular are likely to cause a very significant increase the rate of fuel poverty in the UK, an effect that we will not be immune from, OFGEM may well decide to curb the excesses associated with current development proposals.

It may be a little disingenuous to argue that a major industrial opportunity depends on the landing of an interconnector in South Lochs, when it will not.

If our community is to take up the opportunity offered by renewables then it is in everyones best interest that people are well informed and there is real transparency and inclusion. Only then will we see creative and inspired solutions, and developments that are based in reality and have prospects of materialising.

Anonymous said...

The Yellow and Reds indicate the areas with strongest tides. Isn't that where they see the best wave power locations?

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:30 Yes that's right we only need power twice a day!

Anonymous said...

Erm, the article was about Tidal power and Tidal turbines NOT Wave power and Wave turbines which is why I asked the reason Angus was highlighting the deep blue areas ie off the west coast of Lewis when it's the red and yellow areas that these turbines are best designed to work in.

And Tidal power does not produce power a mere twice a day =)

Anonymous said...

read it again!

Anonymous said...

Angus, if the big LWP scheme was supposed to deliver an interconnector you must be living in cloud cuckoo land. To start with, LWP had not even asked SHETL/ofgem for a place in the connection queue - it was a flyer whose fly-by-night promoters thought they could make a killing with the backing of their political friends (Wilson B and Morrison A) and a gullible Council (and Councillors!).