Tidal

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Emissions reductions targets for both Scotland and the UK will not be met unless the government intervenes to reform Ofgem’s network charging regime, a renewable energy developer has warned. RES said Ofgem’s transmission network charging methodology was one of the “defining reasons” for not proceeding with two recent projects in Scotland.
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Payments made to generators to manage constraints on the transmission network are forecast to rise to between £1 billion and £2.5 billion per year by the mid-2020s, according to National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO). The ESO said the costs, which currently amount to around £0.5 billion per year, are then expected fall back down to similar levels by the end of the decade as major new transmission projects come online.
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Two Tory former energy secretaries have backed calls for offshore windfarm operators to pay compensation to communities scarred by the new transmission infrastructure required to deliver their projects.
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A webinar to explore priorities for digital innovation in the utilities sector as the race for net zero picks up pace. Join for research insights and expert industry views.
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As the UK ramps up its efforts to achieve its decarbonisation aims, the energy and utilities sector is at the forefront of the fight against climate change. Carl Haigney, global vice president and head of retail utilities subsector at Capgemini, outlines several challenges both the sector and the government must overcome in order to set the nation on the right track towards decarbonisation. For Haigney, cutting red tape and providing the right incentives will be key.
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Latest in Tidal

The government has revealed details of the fourth round of the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme, including its £265 million budget. While the bulk of subsidies will go towards offshore wind, £24 million has been ringfenced for floating offshore projects. Established technologies will share £10 million, with a cap of 5GW of capacity.
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An SSE executive has called on the energy retail sector to be clearer on the source of “green energy” claims, stressing that a vertically integrated model provides the most transparent way to do so. Nikki Flanders, managing director of SSE’s customer services division, was speaking to Utility Week after the company recently announced its new business arm was supplying customers with 100 per cent “traceable” renewable power as standard for its business customers.
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An agreement between Isle of Wight-based Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre (PTEC) and Scottish company Orbital Marine Power has paved the way for the island to start producing tidal energy. PTEC has gained offshore consents to place tidal turbines in the sea off the south coast of the island and Orbital, developer of the Orbital O2 tidal turbine, is the first company to sign up.
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Scottish company Orbital Marine Power has completed the construction of a 2MW floating tidal turbine. The 680-tonne turbine was loaded from the Port of Dundee onto a submersible barge in the River Tay earlier today and will now be towed to the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney for commissioning.
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Interconnector capacity between England and Scotland must be quadrupled over the next decade to match up growing supply north of the border to where demand is greatest, a former energy minister has warned. Charles Hendry, who was minister of state for energy from 2010 to 2012, warned the UK and Scottish governments they must develop a much more “common” approach to energy.
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Low-carbon generation fell year on year in the last quarter, on the back of widespread nuclear outages and a “relatively small” increase in renewable output, according to new government statistics.
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Kwasi Kwarteng has revealed that he is “very sympathetic” to giving wave and tidal energy its own “baby pot” within the Contracts for Difference auction process. However, the energy minister acknowledged that there is an issue, particularly within the Treasury, about the higher upfront costs of supporting marine technology.
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The government has announced it is working with National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) to explore how best to enable electric vehicles to take part in the Capacity Market. In an open letter to stakeholders, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said it has also asked the ESO to look into the development of de-rating factors for geothermal and tidal generation.
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The introduction of a three-pot structure for future Contracts for Difference auctions means they are effectively “no longer technologically neutral”, an analyst has told Utility Week. James Brabben, wholesale manager for Cornwall Insight, said the decision is nevertheless the right one given the government’s commitment to build 40GW of offshore wind by 2030.
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The government has confirmed key details of the fourth Contracts for Difference auction, to open in late 2021. The auction’s capacity will increase from 5.8GW in 2019 to 12GW, with offshore wind moved to its own pot. Floating offshore wind projects will be able to bid for contracts for the first time, while onshore wind and solar will be allowed to compete once again. The government has also launched a consultation on a Supply Chain Plan, aimed at “increasing the competitiveness of UK manufacturers”.
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The Welsh Affairs Committee has launched an inquiry into how the UK Government can best support the development of the principality’s renewable energy resources.
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