Scottish Government opens Crown Estate consultation

The Scottish Government has launched a 12-week consultation into the management of the Crown Estate north of the Border, which was devolved under the 2016 Scotland Act.

Roseanna Cunningham, the Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform, said: “Control over the management and resources of the Crown Estate in Scotland should rest with the people of Scotland and this is a genuine opportunity to change the fabric of Scottish society.

“This consultation is a once in a lifetime opportunity to help shape the future management of the Crown Estate in Scotland.”

The Crown Estate’s remit includes leasing the seabed for offshore wind farms and tidal energy installations.

> See the Scottish Government's statement

NextEnergy solar adds four sites to portfolio

NextEnergy Solar Fund is to buy four solar farms, each with a capacity of 5MWp.

The London-listed investment vehicle is purchasing the Bowden site in Somerset, along with the Long Ash Lane and Stalbridge farms in Dorset, which are all due to be connected to the grid before 31 March to gain 1.2 Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs).

The Guernsey-based fund is also acquiring the Mill Farm solar plant under construction in Hertfordshire, which is also expected to receive 1.2 ROCs.

> Read NextEnergy's announcement

Cambridge station to be part solar-powered

The new Cambridge North railway station will generate 10% of its power from solar panels when it opens in May.

The 196-panel system is mounted on the station’s bike sheds and is capable of producing 49kW of power.

Helen Warnock, Network Rail’s Area Director for West Anglia, said: “We used the Christmas period to link the new tracks and signalling equipment to the existing infrastructure, which could only take place while the railway was closed.”

> View Network Rail's announcement

Time-of-use tariff launched

Green Energy UK has launched a domestic “time of day tariff” that will charge different prices for electricity depending on the time it is used.
Doug Stewart, Green Energy UK’s Chief Executive said: “The introduction of smart metering presents the opportunity for a different way to buy energy, a different way to manage our usage, a different way of controlling our bills; a way of being smart in every sense of the word.

“The mantra of ‘switch to the lowest tariff’ has done nothing for energy efficiency and encourages higher use by those who can’t necessarily afford it.”

> See Green Energy UK's statement

Vattenfall looks at Thanet extension

Swedish developer Vattenfall has unveiled plans to extend its Thanet wind farm off the coast of Kent.

The company wants to add a further 34 turbines to the 100-turbine site.

The firm is beginning to consult members of the local community on its proposals.

> View Vattenfall's announcement