Hitachi Wins £700m Nuclear Contract

Japanese firm Hitachi has agreed to build the next generation of UK nuclear power plants in a £700 million deal. The move comes as E.on-owned Horizon Nuclear Power (which Hitachi has just bought) and RWE exit our nuclear power industry.

Plans are already afoot to build two new power stations at sites where existing plants have already been, or soon will be, decommissioned – Wylfa in Angelsey and Oldbury, near Bristol. - Read more »

First Power Produced at London Array

London Array, set to be the world’s largest offshore wind farm, achieved its biggest milestone so far on 29 October when its turbines generated power for the first time. Construction of the mammoth project began in March 2011 and as of 29 October 2012, 151 of Phase One’s 175 turbines had been installed.

Onshore construction activities at Cleve Hill in Kent – including a new onshore substation worked on by Wilding Construction – are now complete and offshore construction should be finished in early 2013. - Read more »

New Onshore Wind Farm Approved

A 19 turbine onshore wind farm project, to be built by developer Peel Energy, has received the go-ahead for construction. The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has approved the wind farm, which will be built near Frodsham in Cheshire and generate enough electricity to power up to 25,000 homes in the area. It will also offset around 50,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year. - Read more »

Minister Pledges Support for Scottish Renewables

Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey has pledged his support for the Scottish renewable energy industry – to the tune of £20 million. During a ministerial visit, Mr Davey also announced plans for a new steering group that will deal with public concerns around renewable energy projects and ‘...inform a new independent study on Scottish Island Renewable Generation.’ - Read more »

Most UK Offshore Wind Contracts Still Going to Overseas Firms

Offshore wind farm developers have admitted that the lion’s share of contracts for projects built in UK waters are still being awarded to overseas companies – despite the UK having more than 60% of the EU’s total offshore wind capacity. Round 2 projects London Array and Thanet have seen just 10% and 20% respectively of their £900 million construction contracts going to British firms. - Read more »

Vattenfall Wind Farm Goes Live off Cumbrian Coast

The Vattenfall Ormonde Offshore Wind Farm, off the coast of Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, has been declared officially open. Vattenfall’s president and CEO, Øystein Løseth and John Woodcock, MP for Furness, were joined by 150 VIP guests for the opening ceremony on 23 September. - Read more »

Poll Shows Huge Public Support for Renewables

A government survey of 2,100 people has revealed high levels of public support for renewable power sources. The poll was carried out on behalf of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) in June and July 2012.

Key findings included: - Read more »

Concerns over ‘Bottleneck’ in Contractor Competence

Wind Energy Update, a leading wind energy think tank, has raised concerns that current levels of contractor competence will struggle to keep pace with the sector’s rapid offshore expansion.

On the one hand, developers lack clarity on the workforce profiles that are required to complete their projects on time. And on the other, contractors need to be able to prove their team’s capabilities before construction even starts – leading to a catch 22 situation. - Read more »

More Milestones at Gwynt y Môr

Work continues apace on the 576MW Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farm, off the coast of North Wales. By the end of August, both of the 1,500 tonne offshore substation platforms will have arrived at the offshore site, having been transported by barge from Belfast. - Read more »

Offshore Turbine Blade Testing Centre Opens

A new centre for testing offshore wind turbine blades has opened at the National Renewable Energy Centre (Narec) in Blyth, Northumberland. The £80 million investment will help the UK lead the world in testing new offshore wind technologies. The new centre will enable Narec to test blades up to 100m long – twice the length allowed by their old facility. - Read more »

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