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UK renewables: 1/25 of 38
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These insulated pipes now connect a new building to University of Warwick's campus-wide combined heat and power system. Local authorities could deliver many more projects like this, where profit-driven energy companies have failed. Photo: Mike1024 / Wikim

Local authorities are key players in our renewable energy revolution

Councillor Mark Hackett

21st August 2014

Government energy policy is caught between apparently conflicting objectives, writes Mark Hackett. But there is a solution that is already working in the UK and abroad - to encourage the active participation of local authorities in delivering low carbon energy to the communities they serve. more...
These solar panels on a Chiswick back street are

Solar panels: a clear & present threat to this and future generations?

Paula Owen

18th August 2014

An array of solar panels on a Chiswick side street, facing a brewery wall, constitute a threat to the quality of life of future generations, according to the council and a planning inspector. Paula Owen begs to differ, and wonders - exactly what kind of mushroom have they been smoking? more...
A large-scale solar farm in the UK. Photo: Trillion Fund.

Solar firms to sue Government for ending support

Rosie Murray-West & Ruth Lumley

9th August 2014.

Four large solar firms are suing the British Government over its decision to end support for 'farm scale' solar generators of 5MW or more. The move reflects ministerial concern about the success of the UK's fast growing solar power sector. more...
José Manuel Barroso - whatever's on his mind, it's not the environment. Photo: European Parliament via Flickr.

Exposed: Barroso's EU anti-environment crusade

EuroActiv

5th August 2014

Plans to crack down on endocrine disruptors and illegal timber were buried by the outgoing President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso and his secretary-general Catherine Day - while undermining action on climate, renewables and energy efficiency. more...
Mirror, mirror, on the wall ... Solar panels near Dukovany nuclear power station, Czech Republic. Photo: Jiří Sedláček (Frettie) via Wikimedia Commons.

Nuclear industry prepares for global boom - or is that doom?

Paul Brown

2nd August 2014

The nuclear industry remains remarkably optimistic about its future, wrties Paul Brown - despite evidence that it is a shrinking source of power as renewables, in particular solar and wind power, compete with increasing success to fill the energy gap. more...
Westmill Solar Park, Oxfordshire, is the world's largest community owned solar installation. Rated at 5MW, it covers 30 acres. Photo: Richard Peat via Flickr.

Will the carbon bubble burst your pension?

Rebecca O'Connor

8th August 2014

What's the biggest threat to your life savings you've never heard of? Rebecca O'Connor shows how the world's exposure to unburnable carbon assets, and competition from clean energy technologies, could hammer your savings, pensions and investments. more...
A common sight in Germany - a solar parking shelter with a generation capacity of approx 0.3MW. Photo: Tim Fuller via Flickr.

Germany's renewable revolution shows the way

Keith Barnham

26th July 2014

How did Germany do it? No, not its World Cup victory - how did Germany engineer Europe's highest penetration of renewable energy, plus fast-dropping electricity prices? Keith Barnham explains - and says the UK could do the same, and better! more...
MP Liz Truss with wind turbine at the Family Action's Escape Allotment in Swaffham. Photo: Matthew Usher / edp24.co.uk/.

Britain's new Environment Secretary is a breath of fresh air

Oliver Tickell

15th July 2014

Britain's new Environment Secretary is young (38), female, blonde, believes in climate change, and has floated imaginative policies to deal with it from a carbon tax to 'personal carbon allowances'. As for badgers ... her silence on the topic promises well. more...
Luke Marion, installer Chris Jardine and Barbara Hammond connect the 140kW scheme's last panel, completing Oxford's biggest solar installation.

Pioneering community renewables in Oxford

Wendy Twist

11th July 2014

A partnership between an Oxford-based social enterprise and the local Council provides a blueprint for financing community energy projects, writes Wendy Twist. And with £2.3 million in the bank, things are really starting to move ... more...
Toyota UK Solar Panel Array at its vehicle plant in Derbyshire. Photo: Toyota UK via Flickr.

Why do Ed and Greg hate solar energy?

Jonathon Porritt

8th July 2014

With the Government wilfully undermining the UK's small but fast-growing solar power sector for the second time, Jonathon Porritt wonders ... why the attacks on what is our second lowest cost source of renewable energy, and getting cheaper all the time? more...
Lambrigg Wind Farm near Kendal in the Lake District, Cumbria, UK. Photo: Steve Oliver via Flickr.

Eric Pickles' war on wind farms could blow UK renewable energy targets

David Elliott

27th June 2014

The UK Government's self-declared war on onshore wind farms will make it very difficult for the UK to meet its EU renewable energy targets, writes David Elliott - especially as it cuts support for solar PV. Is the UK's energy policy being written by UKIP? more...
The solar scheme is planned for Ellough airfield, near this g-kart circuit and next to an industrial estate. Photo: Blue Square Thing via Flickr.

Solar farm go ahead after High Court quashes Pickles's unlawful refusal

The Ecologist

26th June 2014

The High Court has overturned a 'fatally flawed' decision by Eric Pickles MP to refuse planning permission for a locally popular 24MW solar farm on former WW2 airfield in Suffolk, England, close to an industrial estate and go-kart circuit. more...

UK renewables: 1/25 of 38
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Otero Agamemnon speaking at the Renewable Energy conference, 2013.

Agamemnon Otero, renewable dynamo

Lucy Anna Scott

23rd June 2014

Repowering London is an energising force - not just making renewable energy projects happen, but engaging communities to finance them, training young people to install them, and ensuring the benefits stay local. Lucy Anna Scott meets the dynamic Agamemnon Otero ... more...
England needs Scotland's wind power to keep the lights on. Photo: wind farm at Ardrossan by Gordon Cowan via Flickr.

Government hostility to renewables and Scottish independence may put the lights out

Peter Strachan & Alex Russell

1st August 2014

As the UK's electricity supply margins drop to new lows, the government's punitive approach to renewables will only make matters worse, write Peter Strachan & Alex Russell. Likewise its threats to boycott Scotland's wind power is utterly irrational - we will need it to keep our lights on. more...
Beware wolves in sheep's clothing! Photo: public domain.

Beware environmental wolves in sheep's clothing!

William Laurance

9th June 2014

What do the Australian Environment Foundation, the Renewable Energy Foundation and the Global Warming Policy Foundation have in common? They are all fiercely anti-environment, writes William Laurance - and we must beware their 'eco-doublespeak'. more...
To achieve the 50%+ price drop we need for offshore wind, direct R&D funding will produce the transformational technology developments we need much more economically than price support payments.

We need to rethink how we support renewable energy

Chris Goodall

11th August 2014

Feed-in tariffs are a great way to kick start renewable technologies, writes Chris Goodall. But they suffer from a law of exponentially diminishing returns. It's time for governments to move to direct R&D funding to achieve the transformational changes the world needs. more...
What house builders will no longer have to do - the 'BedZED' Beddington Zero Carbon Development in south London. Photo: BioRegional via Flickr.

Government caves in to developers on 'zero carbon' homes

Oliver Tickell

4th June 2014

The Government has gutted its 'zero carbon home' standard - builders will be able to 'zero the carbon' through an offsetting scheme - rather than by installing more insulation, or renewable technologies like solar PV or solar water heating. more...
Toyota Solar Panel Array at its vehicle plant in Derbyshire, where Auris Hybrid, Auris and Avensis cars are built. Photo: Toyota UK via Flickr.

Government reforms will 'probably kill stand-alone solar PV in the UK'

Chris Goodall

17th May 2014

By publishing its 'reform' proposals for the support of large scale solar PV in two separate documents on the same day, the Government managed to conceal its true intent from the industry, writes Chris Goodall. The truth is much worse than anyone realised. more...
Bentley Motors rooftop array is the largest of its kind in the UK. But Government policy is restricting the growth of the sector. Photo: DECC via Flickr.com.

Government attacks UK's 'big solar'

The Ecologist

13th May 2014

Not only does the Government hate onshore wind, now it's turning against large scale solar. Its latest 'big idea' is to lock projects above 5MW out of the Renewables Obligation, while keeping tight limits on rooftop schemes. more...
Barton Moss anti-fracking protestors outside Manchester Court, where cases have recently collapsed against five protestors. Photo: Climate James / SalfordStar.com.

The Noble Lords are wrong - fracking is a dead end for Britain

Tony Bosworth

9th May 2014

Large-scale fracking is a must for the UK economy, says a new report from the House of Lords. But it confuses opinion with fact, cherry-picks data, and six of its authors have a stake in the industry. The real solutions, writes Tony Bosworth, lie in energy efficiency and renewables. more...
Is Cameron's policy to put an end to onshore wind power an illusion? Double rainbow with wind turbines. Photo: Gordon Robertson via Flickr.com.

Cameron's wind policy - designed by Machiavelli?

Alan Whitehead MP

12th May 2014

David Cameron has promised to suspend incentives for onshore wind farms if he is re-elected in 2015, writes Alan Whitehead. But how exactly will he replace the 8GW of planned wind capacity that will not be built? more...
Installation of thermal solar collectors on UK roofs will now be supported by the Renewable Heat Incentive. Photo: Westech Solar UK Ltd.

DECC's triple for renewables

Jonathon Porritt

17th April 2014

With three of Jonathon Porritt's wishes for the UK's energy sector coming true in the space of as many weeks - the launch of the Renewable Heat Incentive, a Solar Strategy and a Community Energy Strategy - he finds cause for celebration. more...
Wind turbines can be gorgeous - but not to Mr Pickles. Photo: Nick Ford via Flickr.com.

Pickles appoints himself Lord of the Wind Farms

Rebecca Cooke

17th April 2014

Turbulence lies ahead for the UK's wind energy sector, writes Rebecca Cooke, as key Conservative MPs appear to be launching a hardline attack on onshore wind farms in the run up to the General Election. more...
Howsham Mill - love at first sight in 2003.

The 'green' watermill restoration that's powering 30 homes

Helen Leavey

3rd May 2014

Ten years ago, Mo and Dave fell in love, writes Helen Leavey - with a ruinous but romantic water mill in Yorkshire. It was the beginning of a fabulous restoration adventure, and the mill is now an exemplar of renewable energy generation and a thriving education centre. more...
The radiotoxicity of nuclear waste from  uranium and thorium based fuels compared. Image: Nuclear Engineering International magazine.

Exposing the thorium myth

Jan Beránek

26th March 2014

Nuclear enthusiasts have been singing the praises of nuclear reactors that use thorium as their fuel instead of uranium. Jan Beránek analyses the claims - and finds that thorium is a mere distraction on the way to our renewable future. more...

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