DeepResource

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Archive for the category “UK”

Floating Wind Turbines

[wikipedia.org] – Floating wind turbine

Mitsubishu Hydraulic Driven 7MW Offshore Wind Turbine

Hydraulics topic starts at [0:25].

Youtube text: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries worked with Artemis Intelligent Power to build this prototype 7MW offshore wind-turbine which is now on test at Hunterston in Scotland. The video shows the rotor blades being made and the building and testing of the wind turbine’s Digital Displacement® hydraulic transmission at Yokohama.

Youtube text: Construction of the largest wind turbine in diameter in the world at 167m. The sea angel was designed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Construction was in December 2014. Working with SSE, MHI Vestas, Artemis Intelligent Power, Innovate UK, and Department for Business Innovation and Skills to complete.

The Sea Angel Turbine is 7MW output and located within 1 mile of Hunterston Nuclear Power Station in Renfrewshire, West Scotland.

[windminds.com] – Mitsubishi 7MW Sea Angel Floating Turbine
[windpowerengineering.com] – Hello SeaAngel: Hydraulic drive train could provide 7 MW offshore turbine
[beta.machinedesign.com] – Hydraulic Wind Turbines?

P.S. in this design the generator is still located in the nacelle.

Scotland Gearing Up For 50% Renewable Energy by 2030

wind-scotland
[source]

The government of Scotland aims to increase the speed with which it wants to implement new renewable energy capcity to the tune of 50% by 2030. This involves overall energy consumption, including heat and transport, so not just electricity.

[news.gov.scot] – The future of energy in Scotland
[cleantechnica.com] – Scotland Aims For 50% Renewable Energy By 2030

Track Side Solar Panels in UK?

Belgium giving the good example: railway tracks covered with solar panels.

Great-Britain is a mid-sized country with high population density. Not strange then that a study has been started to see if space near railway tracks can be used to place solar panels.

[solarlove.org] – UK Studying Track Side Solar Panels To Power Electric Trains

Read more…

UK Government Rejects UCG

algy-cluf[source] UK UCG promoter Algy Cluff is not amused

But following an independent review, which concluded the emissions from the process would be significantly higher than other sources of gas, the UK Government on Thursday ended any remaining hopes, saying it was “minded to not support the development of this technology in the UK”.

Editor: apparently the UK government is confident that their energy needs can be covered from other sources and shy away from potential negative environmental effects. But the coal will remain where it is and other UK governments could change their minds.

[gov.uk] – Underground Coal Gasification – Evidence Statement of Global Warming Potential
[sciencedirect.com] – The analysis of the underground coal gasification in experimental equipment
[telegraph.co.uk] – Government kills off plans to burn coal under the seabed
[fraw.org.uk] – The hell-fires of UCG threaten Tyneside and the North Sea
[scottishconservatives.com] – Now SNP bans underground coal gasification
[foei.org] – Fuelling the fire
[corporatewatch.org] – Underground Coal Gasification scrapped in the UK

Underground Coal Gasification

When we started this blog in 2012, we were convinced that the very near future would be as predicted by ASPO-2000, Colin Campbell and Richard Heinberg, namely that the world was already at or even passed peak oil and a rapid decrease in available oil would shake the foundations of industrial society.

Meanwhile we’re living in 2017 and nothing of the sort has materialized. Oil price is currently at $54 and the concept of peak oil has gone out of fashion. The direct reason for this (for laymen) unexpected development is the rise of the fracking industry. There is however reason to assume that there is far more fossil fuel in the earth’s crust than previously anticipated:

[deepresource] – Fracking is for Amateurs (Apr 2015)

When US president elect Trump claims that there is for centuries worth of coal reserves, he is probably not exaggerating. The North Sea between Britain and Holland is probably one of the, if not the most explored areas in the world. While hunting for oil, explorers studying the core samples resulting from drilling activities, they noticed the presence of vast quantities of coal. Think trillions of tons of coal, a multiple of what humanity has burned so far in its entire history. Obviously it is not possible to mine these reserves in the conventional way, but meanwhile technology has advanced to the tune that it is no longer necessary to operate in this way.

In short: it is possible to drill holes and burn the coal at the location where it resides, by injecting oxygen and water and retrieving CH4, H2, CO and CO2.

[wikipedia.org] – Underground coal gasification

The conclusion is that there is more than enough fossil fuel around to build the renewable energy base.

There is some Soviet experience with UCG, beginning in the thirties.

[lincenergy.com]
Yerostigaz, located in Angren, Uzbekistan, is the only commercial UCG operation in the world. Operational since 1961, Yerostigaz produces UCG synthesis gas to be used for power generation… 1 million m3/day and will continue to do so for the next 50 years.

[scielo.org.co] – Technological Innovations on Underground Coal Gasification and CO2 SEQUESTRATION 
The advantages of this technique are related to its high efficiency, because it makes possible to triple or quadrupling the exploitable coal reserves and so offsetting the decline in reserves of other mineral fuels such as oil and gas. This is particularly suitable for low quality coals, such as lignite and bituminous coal, which produce less heat in combustion due to its high ash content and are they more polluting in conventional plants.

[ualberta.ca] – The Push to Coal Gasification in Alberta
This paper will look specifically at coal gasification as this has the largest impact on Canada and Alberta, specifically in developing a higher value and more environmentally acceptable usage of coal when compared to straight combustion. Modern coal gasification also introduces a cost-effective substitute to natural gas in the form of syngas and hydrogen that can replace natural gas usage for larger natural gas users (such as the oil sands) allowing the natural gas to be freed up for other commercial markets. Finally, the hydro-gasification process produces a relatively pure and easily captured CO2 stream that normal coal combustion does not allow (or is highly uneconomical). In Alberta this carbon dioxide stream is an additional product line for the coal gasifier, who can sell the product to the oil industry for enhanced oil recovery.

[cornerstonemag.net] – Underground Coal Gasification: An Overview of an Emerging Coal Conversion Technology

[lincenergy.com] – carousel with pictures from the thirties

Read more…

Charging While Driving

UK-charging

[mashable.com] – The UK is testing out roads that charge electric cars as they go

Wind Towers Scotland Production Process

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BedZED/UK Eco-Village

BedZED_2007

82 homes, zero carbon emission. Built in 2000-2002. Cars are discouraged, good rail and bus links available. All energy needed is generated on site. Triple glazing. Rain water is reused. Building materials transported over 35 miles max. Waste is recycled.

[wikipedia.org] – Beddington Zero Energy Development (BedZED)
[zedfactory.com] – BedZED
[bioregional.com] – BedZED

Street_in_BedZED

[Google maps]

Read more…

Fracking is for Amateurs

coal_gassification

Rough estimates of the potential of fracking, as practiced in North-America, are that it can postpone the end of the oil age with perhaps a decade or so.

However, there never has been any doubt that the remaining quantity of fossil fuel, stored in the earth’s crust, is many times larger than the cumulative amount of fossil fuel consumed so far in the entire history. The problem has always been: can we access that fuel in an economic way and the concept of EROEI is the leading indicator to decide if a fuel can be exploited economically. The decisive factor is technology, a very dynamic factor. There are for instance enormous quantities of frozen methane lying around on the ocean floor and now it is beginning to dawn that unbelievable large quantities of coal are waiting to be exploited beneath the North-Sea floor, that could be harvested in gas form:

Scientists have discovered vast deposits of coal lying under the North Sea, which could provide enough energy to power Britain for centuries.
Experts believe there is between 3 and 23 trillion tonnes of coal buried in the seabed starting from the northeast coast and stretching far out under the sea.
Data from seismic tests and boreholes shows that the seabed holds up to 20 layers of coal – much of which could be reached with the technology already used to extract oil and gas.

In comparison: so far the world extracted ‘merely’ 0.135 trillion ton of oil, a small fraction of the coal reserves located beneath the North-Sea. In other words: peak conventional oil may have happened in 2005, but in hindsight it was a completely irrelevant event.

If it is wise to exploit these vast reserves is a different matter altogether. But one thing is certain: the original idea we had when we started this blog over three years ago, namely that fossil fuel could become scarce on relatively short notice, that idea needs to be abandoned. Limiting factors will more likely be: finance, geopolitics, war, environment, climate change; not lack of combustible material. It is likely that there is far more fossil fuel around than the atmosphere can ever handle.

Obviously we do not advocate the grand-scale exploitation of coal underneath the North-Sea, although it is nice to know that we in Europe are perhaps not as dependent on the Middle-East for the duration of the transition. What we do advocate is the exploitation of a limited amount to enable the renewable energy transition to occur, meaning a large wind-turbine next to every village and solar panels on every available roof, combined with large scale hydro-storage in mountain areas. The EU should stick to its original goal of 100% renewable energy by 2050. Again: there is no serious energy problem in the long term. There is an awareness problem.

[dailymail.co.uk] – Vast deposits totalling up to 23 trillion tonnes found under the North Sea
[wikipedia.org] – Coal gasification
[theecologist.org] – ‘Underground coal gasification’ hell-fires threaten Tyneside and the North Sea
[thegwpf.com] – Coal is the new black gold under the North Sea
[resilience.org] – 3000 Billion tons of coals off Norway’s coastline
[thejournal.co.uk] – Drilling date set for North Sea’s vast coal reserves
[walesonline.co.uk] – An estimated trillion tonnes of coal found off Wales’ coast
[heraldscotland.com] – North Sea is the place to be in crude price slump declares entrepreneur

gasification_world_624map[source] – North Sea is the place to be in crude price slump declares entrepreneur

Read more…

Floating Solar Panels

floating-solar-pv
Floating solar panels, an interesting solution for overcrowded places like the UK?

Since 2011, French Company Ciel & Terre has been developing large-scale floating solar solutions. Their innovative Hydrelio Floating PV system allows standard PV panels to be installed on large bodies of water such as: drinking water reservoirs, quarry lakes, irrigation canals, remediation and tailing ponds, and hydro electric dam reservoirs. This simple and affordable alternative to ground-mounted systems is particularly suitable for water-intensive industries who cannot afford to waste either land or water.

[alternative-energy-news] – Floating solar panels: a viable solution?

Green Light For British-Norwegian Interconnector

nsn-interconnector

As was the case with earlier cable NorNed, the idea is to use Norway as ‘Europe’s battery pack‘: if there is too much renewable energy generated in the UK, for instance wind energy after 24:00, send it to Norway through the interconnector cable and use the energy to pump up water into mountain basins. When energy is required in Britain, let the water flow back to lower altitudes and generate electricity, that can be send back through the same cable. Overall efficiency still ca. 80%.

Completion date: 2021
Length cable: 730 km
Capacity: 730,000 homes or 1,400 MW (both ways)
Investment: 2 billion euro

[guardian.com] – UK and Norway to build world’s longest undersea energy interconnector

Sustainable Energy — Without the Hot Air

Book on renewable energy from 2009, by David JC MacKay, completely online, including 12 MB pdf (370p).

[amazon.com] – Sustainable Energy – Without the Hot Air

sustain-energy

Renewable Energy #1 Electricity Source in Scotland

scotland-renewable-energy-2014[source]

We reported earlier that Scotland is doing fine in renewable energy matters. Here some new data to confirm that image: renewable energy is the prime source of electricity in Scotland (32%) over the first half of 2014. And there is still a lot of potential for an even bigger role to play for renewables.

[scottishrenewables.com]

The Second American Revolution

first-salute
‘First salute’ by the Dutch-Caribbean port of St. Eustatius on November 16, 1776 in response to a salute given by the American vessel Andrew Doria. It was the first formal recognition of the United States as an independent nation, in casu by the Dutch Republic.

[amazon.com] – The First Salute: A View of the American Revolution

Although we greatly admire Mel Gibson as an actor, historian and wine connoisseur, he clearly was pushing it a little when Hollywood myth factory attempted to portray the events of the ‘American Revolution’ in a most favorable heroic light, for the Americans that is. Here an implausible scene where ‘Patriot‘ Mel Gibson and his two toddlers are taking on a gang of twenty or so British professional killers and finish them off in less than three minutes. Note how the English soldiers patiently wait until it is their turn to be slaughtered:

Well, well, well. The Jewish-American historian Barbara Tuchman has shown that in reality European colonialists aka ‘Americans’, merely played a supporting role in the ‘American revolution’ (rebellion is a better word) and the otherwise brilliant actions of George Washington were hardly more than a side-show in a drama that essentially was a continuation of a European power struggle on North-American soil, in casu between the French and the Dutch versus the British and their German-Hessian mercenaries.

Tuchman-portrait
Barbara Tuchman.

Let’s first collect a few statistics to put everything in perspective:

Population 1776 (million):

France 23
Britain 11
Netherlands 2
Anti-British Colonialists 2
Pro-British Colonialists 0.5

Conclusion: the Europeans had a vastly larger population base than the European colonialists in North America, not to mention taxation, professional armies, world wide empires, navies and commercial fleets. On top of that, not all colonialists supported the drive for independence, particularly not those of British descent.

Killed in action:

French 13,894
Colonialists 4,435-6,824
British 1,240
Germans mercenaries 1,200

That’s quite a revealing statistic: up to three times more French died during the ‘American revolution’ than Americans! We guess it is yet another example of foreigners doing work Americans refuse to do.

So why were the Europeans heavily involved in the American revolution in the first place? Not because the Dutch and most certainly not the French couldn’t wait to get their first Hamburger served. No, it was because the British were getting a little too powerful in the world to the taste of the French and the Dutch. Depriving Britain of a large colony was a rational strategy, to give the British a ‘haircut’, so to speak, after the British had won huge territorial gains in North-America a few years earlier, during the Seven Years War (1756-1763), although first world war would have been a more suitable name (as proposed by Winston Churchill), considering the extent of the globally dispersed battle arenas:

7yearsWarWorldWide[source]
Seven Years War Arena: a true world war with Britain and France as two major opponents.

Results of the Seven Years War (before & after):

e-1756-new-world[source]
Before Seven Years War

e-1763-new-world
After Seven Years War

The upshot of the Seven Years War was that Britain was the winner and France the loser, with the French losing huge North-American territories to the British. The British now controlled all of North America east of the Mississippi up to the Arctic. The French were not amused and did not forget.

European support for the colonialist’ uprising in the early seventies began with the Dutch though, who were instrumental in delivering weapons to the colonialists via the Caribbean island of Sint Eustatius, to get the uprising started.

dutch-guns
No guns, no revolution. Dutch guns used during the American Revolution.

America at the time was never seen as a competitor by the Europeans, America at the time was a European play-thingy. It would take one and a half century before the Europeans started to realize that America could not longer be ignored, but instead had become the home of the largest number of Europeans within the confinement of a single tax farm and hence as the largest economy on earth by the end of the 19th century:

2000-years-economic-history
Extremely rich source of information: 2000 years of history expressed in terms of GDP. From this picture it can be easily distilled that at the time of the American Revolution, the weight of the US dwarfed in comparison to the Europeans. As a little aside, this graph also reveals that the GDP of Germany in 1939 in its turn was dwarfed by the combined GDP of USA, USSR, UK and France, making short shrift with the self-serving allied Nuremberg lie that ‘Germany wanted to conquer the world’, where in reality the US and USSR wanted to conquer the world, conspired together since 1933 and finally did conquer the world, but we digress.

American Revolution Timeline

1758-xx-xx – George Washington elected to Virginia House of Burgesses
1763-02-10 – End Seven Years’ War
1767-07-02 – Townshends Acts
1769-05-11 – Thomas Jefferson elected to Virginia House of Burgesses
1770-03-05 – Boston Massacre
1773-12-16 – Boston Tea Party
1774-09-05 – First Continental Congress meets
1775-04-19 – Battles of Lexington and Concord
1775-06-14 – Creation of the Continental Army
1775-06-22 – Congress issues continental currency
1776-07-04 – Declaration of Independence
1776-11-16 – First Salute St. Eustatius: Dutch recognition of the US
1777-10-17 – Battle of Saratoga, first American victory and turning point of the war
1778-02-06 – The United States and France sign the Treaty of Alliance
1779-04-12 – Anti-British Treaty of Aranjuez between Spain and France
1779-06-21 – Spain declares war on Britain
1780-12-xx – Beginning 4th Anglo-Dutch War
1781-02-03 – British capture St. Eustatius
1781-10-19 – Surrender of Yorktown
1783-09-03 – Treaty of Paris
1784-xx-xx – End 4th Anglo-Dutch War. Holland abdicates as a great power

A selection from Amazon.com comments/review section, probably mostly written by American readers:

1. Despite what Disney would have us believe, the Americans didn’t rally to fighting or winning this war. Congress was as slow, and often made as little sense then as it seems to do from time to time now – Washington was a miracle worker for somehow keeping an army on the field at all. The American Revolution was won by French and Dutch money, and mainly the French military (yes it was fought by many brave Americans too, but there was too much apathy, too much self-interest, and there were too few in number to ever WIN it). Through the story of Rodney, the reader is given a unique perspective from which to witness the incredible mismanagement of the war by the British, insight into those self-destructive practices and entrenched egos that characterized monarchy, and just how close this war was to being lost and how easily it could have turned out differently… All in all, another treasure from Barbara Tuchman.

2. There are five outstanding strengths to this work:

  1. Tuchman documents the incredible fragility of the American troops and leadership,held together by the personality and determination and true cunning of George Washington. Many times the revolution was almost lost except for Washington’s efforts to retreat and frustrate the British armies until he was able to strike on his own terms.
  2. the role of the Dutch in assisting the American colonies is fully documented and appreciated. The Dutch supplied the colonies with weapons, traded through the Carribean. Tuchman makes the case that the revolution would have been lost without Dutch efforts on our behalf.
  3. the tremendous role of the French in the success of the American revolution is further documented.
  4. Tuchman carefully and strategically places the story of the American revolution within the context of world affairs at the time, giving more meaning to the actions of the British and the colonist as well as their allies.

A wonderful product, great scholarship, very readable, this is a total historic winner.

3. I’ve read all of Ms. Tuchman’s books, and this might be her best. Certainly as good as “The Proud Tower.” Many Americans don’t care much about the history of the Revolutionary War, and I had never thought before reading this book about aid to the Rebellion from Holland, of all places. We tend not to remember that Holland was one of the foremost mercantile nations, with an enormous empire. We tend not to think about questions like, “Where did Americans get the weapons and ammunition they needed for the Revolution?”

4. Tuchman explains French intervention in the war rather prosaically. Rather than suffering a monarchical affinity to liberty, equality, and democracy, France intervened because of a centuries old, deep seated hostility to Britain, to disrupt the sugar trade and, more immediately, to redress losses suffered in the Seven Years’ War.
As an American it was at first disorienting, and then refreshing, to view the American Revolution from a European perspective.

5. So was the American a true Revolution? Probably not. Better to be described as the American Rebellion, its successful outcome was decisive in spreading the great hopes of change nurtured by the European Enlightenment, but in the end – like the Dutch – it contented with the reaffirmation of offended rights never proposing officially a brave new man like the French, Russian and Chinese Revolutions.
Very interesting is also the glance cast on the parallel history of the two rebellions: the likeness of William the Silent with Washington, the nature of defensive war, the uneven weight of the forces (both Dutch and Colonies were forced to fight against the strongest superpower of their age), the intestine war (Flanders vs. Holland, American Tories vs. Rebels), the resemblance of the Dutch Act of Rejection and the Declaration of Independence, the actual outcome in the model of federal government.

6. The key to understanding the American Revolution is that of an early national liberation struggle that like all such struggles was desperately in need of arms. And like all such struggles the rebels were not particular about where they got them. This, in the final analysis, is the importance of the first salute- that is the recognition of the colonials to belligerent status by the Dutch in the West Indies where the American rebels could get arms and ammunition.

So why are we bringing up this piece of history?

Answer: because what happened during the American Revolution could very well serve as a template for events in a not too distant future, namely the return of continental Europeans to North-American soil, to once again liberate Americans from an oppressive regime.

American troops have been active on European soil twice in the 20th century. There is absolutely no reason why European troops could not be active on north-American soil in the beginning of the 21st century. Once the Paris-Berlin-Moscow confederation/military alliance of 700 million or so is in place, Europe gets unprecedented options for these kind of operations.

And we Europeans should not forget about our own interest in this. If we do nothing, this is going to be the world of the future:

1984_fictious_world_map
Orwell’s 1984: Judaic Anglosphere = totalitarian Oceania (pink), Christian Euro-Siberia (purple), Islamic Caliphate (yellow), Confucianism (green).

The mortal danger exists of a potential Anglo-Chinese alliance, which would leave Euro-Siberia surrounded and we would have more or less the situation of 1941 back, with continental Europe surrounded by an Anglo-Soviet alliance, with known disastrous consequences (for Europe).

From a European perpective it is much better to draw at least a constitutionalist part of the US to our side and as such ‘neutralize America’. Here is a recent map of potential secessionist movements within the US:

secession-which-states[source]
American states with secession movements, with a staggering 25% support, with considerable upward potential when the situation in the US deteriorates. Texas could be the first to secede and provide a convenient landing place for European logistical support and eventually troops.

SECESSION_opinion_map-with-q[source]
American states with the highest public desire to secede from Washington. Again Texas scores highest. It is obvious that Europe should concentrate on Middle-America aka ‘fly-over country’ and stay clear from the coastal cities.

The map shows that potential for a ‘liberated constitutionalist strip’ exists between the Gulf of Mexico and Canada, effectively splitting the US in the middle. With the Latino majority states, like California, New Mexico and Arizona returning to Mexico…

Mapa_de_Mexico_(Imperio_Mexicano)_1821
Mexico 1821. Could reemerge when the buck from Washington will stop after the end of the dollar era and the subsequent USSR/Yugoslav/Iraq/Syria-style ethnic Great Divorce.

…leaving only NYC and DC to the neocons to play ‘benevolent empire’ with, good luck with that. Game, set and match European civilization. A European Commonwealth of ca. 800 million (Paris-Berlin-Moscow, Canada and US constitutionalists) is more than enough to balance a rising China of 1300 million and provide for a very stable security architecture for the rest of the 21st century.

In this scenario, Euro-Americans will get a choice: 1) do you want to live in a totalitarian third world USA, threatening the rest of the world or 2) do you define yourself as Europeans after all and as such soldier on as a secessionist sovereign state within a ‘European commonwealth’, together with Canada and protected/guaranteed by Europe (now including Russia).

So when could this scenario being played out? Answer: when the world dumps the dollar at the latest and the US government will be broke.

DWO-EU-27Nachhaltigkeitsran
The US is a financial house of cards about to implode

That’s when the massive social unrest and looting will begin on a continental scale. Large parts of the US one big Ferguson.

Ferguson during the past 24 hours.

That’s when the Euro’s decide to have enough, grab for their guns and attempt to secede, which DC and its third world proletariat will try to prevent. That will be the moment for Europe to side with the secessionists and begin to support them, exactly like how Russia supported the Donbass insurgency with material support and freelance fighters and perhaps eventually with regular troops.

The John Adams of the future second American Revolution (Alex Jones?) should establish diplomatic relations with European nationalist parties now, as well as Putin-Russia. He should ask for talks with Marine le Pen first and make sure he gets a handshake captured on camera. Next he should try to do the same with a high-ranking Russian officials of Putin’s United Russia party.

[lewrockwell.com] – The Second American Revolution. Very serious topic hidden in a humorist message.

watson-tunisian-fruit

esq-alex-jones-gun
Europe’s natural allies: Ron Paul, Paul Craig Roberts, Pat Buchanan, Alex Jones, Jesse Ventura, Edward Snowden, Lew Rockwell and many others.

Pictures from the 1984 winter olympics in Sarajewo, Yugoslavia. On the stand lots of Yugoslavs, proudly and harmoniously celebrating the opening ceremony of their Olympics. Seven years later Yugoslavs no longer existed, just Serbs, Croats, Slovenians, Bosnians, etc. nota bene all ethnic Slavs, inhabiting the Former Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY). Won’t be different with America after the fall. By 2030 at the latest, Americans will have cease to exist and what will remain after the Great Divorce will be just Europeans, Africans, Latino’s, Asians and native Americans in a balkanized territory known as the Former Republic of America (FRA).

Pumped Hydro Storage In Scotland

cruachreserv[source]
Cruachan power station

As reported earlier, renewable energy is doing well in Scotland. But with the increase of that segment of energy generation, the need for storage becomes ever more prominent, considering the intermittent nature of renewable energy supply. The best remedy to date is pumped hydro storage, meaning: if you have too much supply of renewable energy, use that energy to pump water high up into a mountain reservoir and release that potential energy when energy demand is larger than the existing renewable energy system is able to supply.

Currently Scotland has two reservoirs used for pumped storage: Cruachan (1967, 400 MW) and Foyers (1969, 300 MW):

foyers-cruachan

With increased exploitation of renewable energy, more facilities need to become available to even out intermittent supply. Two options:
1. Connection to the European Supergrid
2. New local hydro-pumped storage facilities

Two new facilities re planned for the Great Glen area with a combined capacity of 900 MW.

It has been calculated that if Scotland wants to keep storage matters entirely in its own hands, it would need 7 GW total pumped hydro storage capacity, ten times as much as is available now.

Strong opposition from environmentalists against more mountain hydro reservoirs exists, but it remains to be seen how much of that resistance remains, once push comes to shove and an average Scot is forced to stay in bed in a dark home, thinking about how he would like to have his environmentalist best: medium or well done.

Another option would be to combine large scale pumped hydro storage with battery storage at home, where matters are developing fast, with $100/kwh a possibility in the long term. Under these circumstances, for ca. $1,000 a family could store electricity for two days or more.

[scotsrenewables.com] – Pumped Storage Hydro In Scotland
[secretscotland.org.uk] – Cruachan Power Station
[wikipedia.org] – List of 10 Scottish hydro-electric power stations

Her Majesty’s Fool, Sir Lancelot Oliphant

oliphant

In 1932 a shabby group of Arabian camel-driver-look-alikes paid a visit to the British Foreign Office with the request to invest in drilling for oil in Arabia. The Arabs had strong preference for the British, the super power at the time (until they committed suicide when they obeyed the Americans to declare war on Germany, that was in dispute with Poland over the German town of Danzig, so the Americans and Soviets could take over Europe, but we digress). The British however concentrated on recent oil finds in Persia and Mesopotamia and the serving mandarin sir Lancelot Oliphant said ‘no’.

Oliphant chose to slam an open door. He replied that “British firms might hesitate to accept a report not drawn up by a British expert”, and expressed doubt “as to the readiness of British firms to sink capital in a little-known country at the present time”.

Two weeks after the British rejection, the Americans discovered oil in Bahrain, off the Saudi coast. Saudi-Arabia, the future largest oil producer of the planet, would be firm in the American pocket, until today.

[bbc.com] – The diplomat who said ‘No’ to Saudi oil

Editor: without this fatal decision it is unlikely that the Americans could have pumped as many (petro) dollars into the world’s financial system as they managed to do, until the inevitable moment will arrive when the world’s factory China will decide that they have enough dollars and decide to dump the dollar by sending them back to sender and the dollars will rain over America like in a giant ticker tape parade.

apollo_11_tickertape[source]

Renewable Energy in Scotland

Scotland4
Growth renewable installed capacity between 2007-2013.

Scotland is generally associated with melancholic landscapes, rain, cold and grayness (exactly as a serious country needs to be, but then again we are Dutch), not exactly a country you would expect renewable energy to thrive. Think again. In October, Scotland’s combined renewable energy sources generated enough electricity to cover all residential needs. OK, Scots are favored by a relative large homeland (1/3 of the UK) for merely 3 million homes and 5.3 million people. But nevertheless, here some very impressive figures:

Wind: covered 126% of the electricity needs of every home in Scotland!
Solar electricity: 46% of an average home’s electricity energy needs in Edinburgh, 38% in Inverness, 37% in Glasgow, and 33% in Aberdeen.
Solar hot water: 41% of the hot water needs of an average home in Edinburgh, 31% in Inverness, 30% in Glasgow, and 27% in Aberdeen.

Scotland has the clear intention to continue on the path of strong growth.

Scotland3
Installed renewable capacity segments in 2014.

[cleantechnica.com] – Scotland’s Renewable Sector Generated Over 100% of Residential Electricity Needs In October

Now we’re off to watch Braveheart for the third time.

UK’s First Floating Solar Field

uk-floating-solar
Britain has built its first floating solar field. Obvious advantage for overcrowded Britain: no wasting of valuable farmland. Additional advantage: thanks to cooling effect of water, higher yield.

Parameters:

Location: Wargrave, Berkshire
Size: 800 solar panels, 200 kW
Cost: £250,000
Payback time: six years
Lifetime: 30 years
Developer: Ciel & Terre, France

[rt.com] – UK’s first floating solar field produces 200kw of power
[theguardian.com] – First floating solar farm built in UK

floating-solar-field

Floating solar system diagram[source]
Artist impression

IKEA to Expand Solar Panel Sales to 8 Other Nations From UK

ikea-solar2[source]
In the UK, IKEA has a 3.4 kW system on offer for £5,700 (€7.260 or $9,326) including installation.

IKEA said that it would expand its offer of residential solar panels, sold in its British stores since 2013, in partnership with the British unit of Chinese clean energy generator Hanergy Holding Group Ltd.

The solar offer would expand to the Netherlands in October and Switzerland in December, and to stores in another six nations within 18 months. IKEA did not name those countries.

[reuters.com] – IKEA to widen solar panel sales to eight new nations from UK
[theguardian.com] – Ikea boosts solar power outlook with £5,700 home system
[ikea.com]

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