£11m funding for EV to grid trial

Four electric vehicle demonstration projects have been awarded £11 million by the UK Government.

The “vehicle to grid” projects will look at how energy from the power network can be stored in batteries on board cars and vans.

Ian Cameron, Head of Innovation at UK Power Networks, which is part of the consortium that has been awarded the cash, said: “Electric vehicles are effectively energy sources on wheels, so there are tremendous opportunities to explore how electricity networks can use any spare capacity in those batteries to benefit our customers.”

> Read UK Power Networks' announcement


Generation milestone for Walney

Power is now being generated by the Walney wind farm, lying in the Irish Sea off the coast of Cumbria.

The wind farm – which is owned by developer Orsted and Danish pension funds PFA and PKA – consists of 47 Siemens Gamesa 7MW turbines and 40 MHI Vestas 8MW towers.

The 659MW project will surpass the London Array to become the world’s largest operational wind farm when it is completed later this year.

> See Orsted's statement


Smart energy start-up secures £5.5m

Upside Energy, a Manchester-based cloud computing firm that uses artificial intelligence to enhance energy systems, has secured £5.5 million of funding.

The cash came from Legal & General Capital, special investment firm Systemiq, North Carolina-based energy asset manager Modern Energy, Yale early-stage venture capital investor Bulldog Innovation Group, and individual investors.

Graham Oakes, Upside’s Founder and Chief Scientist, said: “We’ve taken Upside Energy’s cloud platform from a wild and speculative idea to a solid, innovative solution to help people harness the opportunities created by the confluence of two trends: the growth of renewable generation and the rise of smart devices.”

> View Upside Energy's announcement


Union raises safety concerns

The Unite trade union has called for the UK Government and the Health & Safety Executive to tighten the law after a wind farm worker died after being trapped in the snow on the Afton wind farm project in East Ayrshire.

The 74-year-old worker died after being airlifted to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, while his 42-year-old colleague was also rescued.

> Find out more about Afton


Housing association in wind farm plans

The Fyne Homes housing association has unveiled proposals to erect three wind turbines on the Kintyre peninsula.

The 6.9MW wind farm will be funded with £11.4 million from Triodos Bank and £2.82m from the Renewable Energy Investment Fund operated by the Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of economic development agency Scottish Enterprise.

Kerry Sharp, director of the Scottish Investment Bank, said: “After ten years of development, we are delighted to help secure this investment in Scotland.”

> Read Fyne Homes' statement