Posted on: 18/06/2019
National Grid makes raft of innovation investments
Four companies and two funds are to benefit from investments from National Grid Partners, the power network operator’s innovation arm.
NGP is investing in the IQ Capital Fund III and the Jerusalem Venture Partners VIII Fund, building on its previous investment in the Energy Impact Fund.
The firm is also investing in Audio Analytic, Carbon Lighthouse, Copperleaf and GoCardless, taking its direct investments in companies to 12.
More than 11m now employed in renewables globally
The number of people working in the renewable energy industry has risen from 10.3 million in 2017 to more than 11 million last year, according to the latest report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
Solar photovoltaic (PV) and wind remain the “most dynamic” of all renewable energy industries, IRENA said, with solar PV accounting for one-third of the total renewable energy workflow and retaining its top spot in the global league table, ahead of liquid biofuels, hydropower, and wind power.
China alone accounts for 44% of global wind employment, followed by Germany and the United States.
Offshore O&M spend set to rise significantly
Global spending on offshore wind operation and maintenance (O&M) is expected to grow by 17% annually to €11 billion (£10bn) by 2028, according to consultancy firm Wood Mackenzie.
Europe will be the largest contributor to the size of the market, accounting for €6.7bn in value, while the Asia Pacific region is expected to keep up the pace in O&M market size and spend.
Shimeng Yang, Senior Offshore Wind Analyst at Wood Mackenzie, said: “We expect average OPEX across Europe to drop by 57% between 2019 and 2028, mainly driven by larger turbine ratings, improved turbine reliability and economies of scale in service – due to larger-scale projects – new service practices and clustering opportunities.”
Renewables hub wins £4m in funding
The Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has pumped a further £4 million of funding into the Supergen Offshore Renewable Energy research hub.
The hub, which consists of a consortium of researchers spread across universities throughout the UK, initially received £5m from ESPRC when it was setup in July 2018.
Extra cash will now be available through the hub’s flexible fund to provide research grants of up to £100,000.
UK could deploy 80GW of solar PV by 2030
Solar could provide at least 20% of the UK’s electricity and create 200,000 jobs in the country by 2030, more than double current forecasts according to new research.
Analysis carried out by Energy Watch Group and LUT University in collaboration with Solarcentury, estimates the UK could increase its solar capacity by more than six times by 2030 to 80GW.
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