10 ways we can reclaim our energy supply

Would you like to live in a zero carbon future, where a whole new approach to energy has delivered benefits not just for the planet, but also for people and communities?

Rethinking how we access the energy we need is a key challenge as we work to build a zero carbon future. Changing our approach to the production and ownership of energy — who generates it, and who profits — could have many wider benefits, including for people and communities that could benefit financially from local renewable energy projects. Continue reading “10 ways we can reclaim our energy supply”

Waves, weirs and waterwheels – unleashing the power of water

How can we use and manage water in a more sustainable way? CAT volunteer and MSc student Ed Macdonald has been exploring the issues and delving into the detail of hydro power.

Born in the year of the water dragon, perhaps my interest in watercourses is to be expected. As a kid in a nearby natural sandpit I was enchanted by flow of the stream, able to bypass attempts to dam it with clay. Fast forward 20 years, I found a refreshing challenge in designing water treatment facilities for schools in the Kenyan highlands with an NGO, which led me to CAT’s Graduate School of the Environment for further training.  Continue reading “Waves, weirs and waterwheels – unleashing the power of water”

Interview: Jake’s making renewable energy work for housing associations

Jake Lock Profile

Jake Lock started studying MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment in 2012. He has now completed studying all the taught modules on the course and is about to embark on his dissertation. We caught up with him about how studying the course has been useful for him and the housing association he works for.

Jake is studying renewable energy
Jake Lock – Renewable Energy Student

How has studying the course been useful for your career?

I work in a housing association development team. I have been working there since before I started the course. A big part of the motivation for studying Renewable Energy and the Built Environment was that we were starting a lot of projects involving solar thermal, heat pumps, combined heat and power and biomass. Neither our team nor the contractors we were using really understood it. We were installing systems for people in fuel poverty but they didn’t understand the system and neither did we.

I’m still working in the same company now, and I have become the ‘green guru’ within the team. I feel a lot more knowledgeable, so it has been very useful.

What made you choose this course?

I liked this course because it is so hands on. There is a good bit of theory too but you also get to play with the stuff. I did an engineering foundation course prior to starting the MSc because I wanted to make sure I would be able to keep up with the engineering parts of the course.

How was the experience of the course for you?

I have really enjoyed the course. It is very hard work working full time alongside studying, but I love coming here and spending time with like minded people from a real wide variety of different backgrounds. It feels like a hideaway where we can all come and geek it up for a week.

Interview: Petra’s employed in solar and researching renewable energy for conservation

Petra is studying on the MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment course at CAT. After taking a break between finishing here taught modules and starting her dissertation she has been up at CAT today speaking to her tutor about a dissertation idea. It was a great opportunity for us to catch up with her about her experience of the course so far and what she has been able to do with it.

Profile petra varga
Petra Varga – Renewable Energy Student

What is the dissertation about?

I’m looking a coral reef restoration project. For restoring coral they use submerged metal cages with an electrical current going through them at a low voltage. Over time these cages grow limestone on them, which helps establish the coral. At the moment this electric current is usually powered by diesel generators. I am looking at the potential of using marine current generators instead.

How did you get into studying renewable energy at CAT?

I trained as an Electrical Engineer in Hungary, and then worked as an automation specialist for eight years. I worked particularly on software testing in automated warehouses.

I guess I was looking for something that felt more important. I find that just working for money isn’t very motivating.

So I found the course at CAT and decided to come over and study here.

How has studying at CAT impacted on your career?

Initially I continued working in automation alongside studying, but I was looking for a new job. I used to find it was whenever I was meant to be writing an essay I would get distracted with looking for jobs instead! I wanted to find something in the renewable energy sector.

In January 2014, whilst still studying at CAT, I got a contract with a PV installation company as a project engineer. I had tried looking for a renewable energy job before starting the course and nobody was interested, so I certainly think being on the course made a difference. In the interview we had to complete some calculations, which seemed very simple after studying on the course. I didn’t find it to difficult to get into the work once I had started either.

How was your experience of studying at CAT?

I really enjoyed it. When I was doing my undergraduate degree I didn’t know what I really wanted to do. I was much more motivated with my MSc because I had a sense of purpose.

I met lots of people on the course, which was fun. I like the whole setup at CAT. When I first came for an open day it took hours to get here and I thought ‘is the drive going to be worth it?’ It definitely was. The setting here is so beautiful it is almost like being on a holiday. I always enjoy coming away here.

Interview: Colin’s taken his skills into research and development

Colin Jones studied on the Renewable Energy and the Built Environment programme at CAT from 2010 to 2014. This week he has been back helping to run a practical with current students on PV flash testing. We took the opportunity to catch up with him about his experience of the course and what he has gone on to do since graduation.

Colin Jones, Ex-Student

What first convinced you to study the Renewable Energy and the Built Environment course?

I first came to CAT is 2007 when I did a Solar Photovoltaic (PV) installers course. I met Stuart (the programme leader) who told me about this new course they were launching. I joined the following year.

I didn’t have a degree previously, but they accepted me onto the course on the basis of my previous experience. I had my own electrical engineering company and we had been working on a lot of residential solar installations since the feed in tariff was introduced.

I was particularly attracted to the practical bias of the course at CAT. I also liked the idea of the modular structure, where each module included intensive residential weeks.

How has doing the course impacted on your career?

Half way through the course I got a job with Carillion Energy working as a project manager on commercial, medium scale, PV projects. These were larger and more complex projects than I had previously been working on, and it gave me a chance to put into practice all I had learned on the PV module of the course. I’m sure I was offered the job because of being on the Renewable Energy course. I also still had my own company, so that was doing the residential installations whilst I was working on the commercial projects with Carillion Energy.

12 months ago, after completing the course, I got a new job working for Tharsus. Tharsus is an engineering company that is researching and developing new technology. My job is not just to do with renewable energy now; I look at automation and processes more generally. Having said that, we do have some work to do with renewable energy products, particularly in energy storage.

Although I am not always working directly on renewable energy systems now, the skills I learned from the MSc course are definitely still useful. In particular, the skills around data collection and processing that I learned on the course. I use these skills all the time.

Find out more about studying MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment

Interview: Elgan’s developing new renewable energy projects across the UK

profile Elgan Roberts

Elgan Roberts has been studying on the Renewable Energy and the Built Environment course part time since 2012. He is half way through writing his thesis, which seems like a good time to look back on the course and the impact it is having on his career.

profile Elgan Roberts
Elgan Roberts – Renewable Energy Student

What impact has studying MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment had on your career?

My background was in mechanical engineering. I graduated in 2002 and then worked in the agricultural industry for seven years until 2009. At that point I wanted to move back to Wales, where I am from, and I was also interested in getting into renewable energy.

I managed to get a job with a small wind installation company in Bangor doing feasibility studies and project management. I decided to do an MSc alongside working to allow me to advance in my career.

About six months after starting the course I got a new job with a bigger national company called Carter Jonas. In this company I was able to work on larger scale projects, and more of a range of projects involving hydro, solar, wind and biomass. I wouldn’t have got this job without being on the course. Working in a bigger company has allowed me to expand my career. I’m directly using the skills I gained on the course in my work

Why did you decide to do the MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment course at CAT?

I looked at it originally because it was at a convenient location near to Bangor. What I particularly liked about it was the good mix of face to face and distance learning. Studying through 5-night blocks meant I could do the course without missing much work, and it didn’t really impact on my employers. I came to an open day and I was really impressed with the teachers and facilities.

How was the experience of the course for you?

One of the things I have most appreciated whilst being on the course is that the small numbers of students means you get plenty of time with the lecturers to look at things in detail

I have definitely enjoyed the course, although it is hard work if you are studying alongside working full time. There are a good bunch of people on the course, and you spend all your time with them during the on site attendances. A week at a time is a good amount of time to spend with people. I’ve made some great friends who I will certainly stay in touch with.

MSc Renewable Energy and the Built Environment – More Information

Community energy in Wales: overcoming the challenges

The benefits of community energy projects cannot be overstated, so why do so many fail to get off the ground? Paul Burrell from Machynlleth based Anemos Renewables shows how some Welsh communities are tackling – and overcoming – the obstacles. This article orginally appears in the CAT membership magazine Clean Slate

If we are to avoid the most devastating effects of climate change, we need a rapid transition to a clean, efficient, renewables-based energy system. Community energy projects have a huge role to play in delivering an equitable and fair energy system. In Denmark, for example, over 100 wind turbine co-operatives have a combined ownership of three quarters of the country’s turbines. The price per kWh for electricity from the community-owned wind parks is competitive with conventional power production.

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Community energy is the natural tonic to commercial renewable energy developments, which are largely owned and operated by corporations. Utility companies and large development companies are often based financially outside of the UK. Current planning guidance only requires commercial projects to give a small percentage of this revenue to the local community, whilst the lion’s share is funnelled out to commercial shareholders.

In contrast, a community-scale energy project places ownership of the power generator, either wholly or in part, within the local community, and the net revenue accumulated during the lifespan of the project is distributed to local people and projects. These projects ensure that members of the local community retain some control over their power generation options, which then reduces reliance on imported power and, in the longer term, reduces carbon emissions.

Community energy development within Wales, particularly in the case of wind energy schemes, are supported by national planning policy that recommends planning departments support projects owned and operated by local communities. Furthermore, there are grant funds available for community energy development (Ynni’r fro is one example). A well-sited renewable energy scheme is a valuable long-term asset, particularly with rising power costs and strong UK incentives for generation. Wales also has an extensive network of established communities which, until fairly recently, still operated a large number of hydroelectric projects and are therefore used to being in control of their power generation.

A well-sited renewable energy scheme is a valuable long-term asset.

This all sounds good so far, especially when you factor in the excellent wind and water resources that Wales possesses in abundance across a large percentage of the country. Yet despite the factors in their favour, community energy schemes across Wales are being held up by lengthy planning processes and local opposition.

In the South Wales Valleys economic cuts are biting, and opportunities for communities to generate extra revenue are limited. To combat these negative factors a local arts-based organisation decided that a windblown hilltop in Ferndale village would be the perfect place for a community-owned wind energy scheme of significant scale. The group approached the local landowner and quickly developed an idea to deliver a cluster of commercial-scale turbines that would then generate revenue for the community, to be used in improving access to art facilities for all. The site itself was commercially viable and able to technically accommodate the wind energy scheme, and so the planning application was prepared, submitted and, after some time, approved by the local planning authority. By then, however, delays during the planning process meant that the legal agreement between the landowner and the group had expired. Meanwhile a commercial developer had approached the landowner and placed a better offer on the table than that from the community group. The landowner signed with the commercial developer, who subsequently developed the wind energy scheme, retaining all ongoing profits. The local group now have the pleasure of watching the turbines spin whilst receiving almost none of the revenue produced. The group are still working on developing another community renewable energy scheme.

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Further north, in the Black Mountains, another community group has set up a community development trust with the aim of improving opportunities within the locale. Awel AmanTawe (AAT) had approached a local landowner (as in Ferndale) and agreed a deal to deliver a small cluster of commercial-scale turbines across the site area. The majority of the revenue from the scheme was to be routed back into the community, with many expected benefits to the economic situation. That was over ten years ago. Since then, despite the site finally gaining planning consent after an extended and expensive battle with the planning authority, the turbines are yet to be installed. The reason for the delay is a combination of local opposition to the scheme and the council planning department obstructing the commission and construction of the site. Visit the proposed site today and you are unlikely to find a more suitable wind site in Wales. It is, in fact, only the ongoing commitment of AAT that has kept the scheme and local hopes alive, and the group is now working towards an installation date of 2016. Having spent 10 years developing the project with nothing yet on the ground, the organisation has discovered just how costly and time-sapping this process can be.

Over in Pembrokeshire two other community schemes have been threatened by council policies. Both schemes are for medium-scale turbines and located in areas where planning consent should be achievable. The projects were undertaken using EU grant money, with volunteers and employed consultants working on development.

The planning applications clearly illustrated that revenue from the installed wind turbines would be retained by local groups and that any visual impact of the turbines would be offset by the positive effects of local ownership. However, Pembrokeshire Council ruled that both schemes were in conflict with landscape protection policies, and both schemes were refused at planning committee level. At this stage, resource-limited community groups face two options: to appeal to the Planning Inspectorate, which incurs further costs and volunteer time, or to hold back on the project. In this particular case both groups appealed, one of them successfully. The Planning Inspectorate acknowledged the community benefit package as offering mitigation to the potential landscape impact from the installed turbine, whilst in the other case they did not. The refused project continues to forge ahead with a redesigned scheme and hopes to resubmit planning in the near future, while the consented project is aiming for installation in the near future.

It is vital we enable communities to reap the benefits of decarbonisation.

The last example of a community energy project in Wales that is struggling to get off the ground is in Ceredigion, an area with some of the best wind resources in Wales. An enthusiastic community group wanted to install a single medium-sized wind turbine that could power up to 300 homes. A deal was made with a local farmer and planning work was commissioned. The local golf club argued that the wind turbine would cause the golf club to lose money, potentially causing a flickering shadow on the golf course. The objection was upheld and the landowner stepped quietly away from the project. Ceredigion Fair Wind has now found other wind energy sites and is working towards a further planning submission – speaking volumes about their indomitable spirit, something which is proving critical in delivering these kinds of projects.

The future – energy democracy

Climate change is not going away; power demand is rising and our reliance on imported fuel is growing. Meanwhile millions are struggling to pay the extortionate fuel bills from the Big Six energy companies, with over 2.28 million people in the UK living in ‘fuel poverty’.

Small energy co-ops show how we can build a sustainable and affordable energy future and offer hope to communities that are desperately trying to source extra income to keep public services and opportunities open to all. There are a great many positive examples of community energy schemes in action, but many of them have only come about through hard- fought battles with outdated council planning rules as well as prejudice against renewable energy.CSI-Energy-Democracy

2014 closed with a stark warning from UN climate scientists that we must take action now to quickly and rapidly reduce carbon emissions. It is vital that in doing so we empower and enable communities to reap the benefits of that decarbonisation. The Welsh Government continues to support such schemes via the excellent Ynni’r fro and by improving policy to help planners give favourable weight to community energy applications. Financial incentives continue to support renewable energy schemes, and the wind and rain continue to batter Wales, providing an excellent sustainable resource to be exploited. In many areas there is local ambition and, despite the challenges that community groups face, it is apparent that victories are starting to emerge. As such projects become widespread and the benefits become clear there is substantial reason to believe that Wales can vastly improve its network of community energy projects – providing hope and inspiration to future generations facing the ever-increasing challenges of climate change.

About the author

Paul Burrrell lives and works in Machynlleth, Powys, having completed an MSc in Advanced Architecture and Environmental Studies at the Centre for Alternative Technology in 2008. He currently works for the Severn Wye Energy Agency alongside Ecodyfi on the Ynni’r Fro Scheme, which supports communities who wish to install their own large-scale renewable energy systems. Paul works in both Ceredigion and Gwynedd as the Ynni’r Fro technical development officer, assisting groups from the initial contact and site assessment (feasibility) stages, then providing on-going technical support throughout the development phases of the wind, hydro or anaerobic digestion projects. He coordinates funding applications that are required at each key stage from the funding body, and can assist groups to legally constitute (if required) and to facilitate community liaison events.

Making the most of the skills he gained studying at CAT, Paul is now co-director of Anemos Renewables (set up in 2011), an independent company that works with local farmers and landowners to develop small to medium scale wind energy schemes. The company’s MCS-accredited installers offer services including a full ‘Turnkey’ service for the installation of MCS-certified Evance 5kW R9000, Aircon 10S, Winspot 5kW and Tozzi Nord TM535 wind turbines. They also offer consultancy services for the development of small and medium (<500kW) wind turbine projects, including feasibility studies, preparation of planning applications, system design, grid connection and project management of the installation. For further information see www.anemos.org.uk or contact Paul Burrell at zephyros@anemos.org.uk

 

 

 

Zero Carbon Britain and OpenEnergyMonitor collaborate on open source energy model

Zero Carbon Britain and OpenEnergyMonitor are collaborating on a new open source energy model http://zerocarbonbritain.org/energy_model/ aimed at helping users explore and visualise how a zero carbon energy system could work. The model shows hour-by-hour how energy supply and energy demand match up, the back-up power required, and how energy storage can help to balance supply and demand. The model also allows users to explore how much biomass is required for back-up power and other fuels and to see if their choices add up to a zero carbon energy system.

energy model 1

Philip James of the Zero Carbon Britain team is collaborating on the model with Trystan Lea of OpenEnergyMonitor. The model fits in with OpenEnergyMonitor’s work developing open source tools that allow users to monitor, evaluate and understand their own energy use. Their intention is to try and relate in house monitoring of electricity consumption, such as heatpump performance and electric car charging, with information about renewable supply both onsite and from the grid. This could help answer questions such as: how much of my heatpump’s electricity is likely to be coming from wind farms in the UK? How much would be coming from wind farms in the future? And if there was significant storage on the grid when would that electricity be coming directly and when would it be coming via a store. OpenEnergyMonitor are also exploring the potential for automatic control of these larger energy uses depending on renewable supply availability.

One study they have undertaken already explores and visualises the changes needed to get around 20 actual households in North Wales from their current energy use and carbon emissions to zero carbon http://egni.ecobro.org/data . With an hourly zero carbon energy system model, this kind of community energy planning exercise can take into account the variability of renewable energy supply and energy storage considerations in addition to the ‘power down’ demand side solutions.

These tools aim to help make it easier to join the dots between individual action and understand what’s needed at the community, regional and country-wide scale to get to zero carbon.

As with ZCB and OpenEnergyMonitor‘s other work, the tool is freely available and open source. We’d really like those who are interested to get involved, either by giving feedback and suggestions for the tool’s development or for other work in this area. Those who are really keen can download the computer code and contributing to the development directly https://github.com/philJam/energymodel .

 

:

http://zerocarbonbritain.org/energy_model/1

http://egni.ecobro.org/data

 

The sun shines on Mynydd Gorddu Windfarm.

The sun shines on Mynydd Gorddu Windfarm.

 

A REBE trip to Myn ydd Gorddu Windfarm.
A REBE trip to Myn ydd Gorddu Windfarm.

 

Yesterday the REBE (Renewable Energy and the Built Environment) students were taken to visit Mynydd Gorddu Wind Farm located near Tal-y-bont, Ceredigion, West Wales and given a tour by the site manager. As a media volunteer I get to document all the interesting excursions students make, and so I thanked the weather gods for a sunny day, pulled on my long johns and packed my camera. After bumpy ride down narrow roads on the local coach, we arrived and were greeted by the sites operational manager, a sharp man in his forties. With the sun on our backs, we huddled round like penguins as he explain how this wind farm, which has been successfully running for nearly 20 years was started.

 

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Developed initially by Trydan Gwynt Cyfyngedig in 1997 – a company owned by a local family, Dr Dafydd Huws and Mrs Rhian Huws, npower renewables was involved in the early stages but in 1993 ceased to be involved with the project. Beaufort wind Limited are listed as the owner now, RWE Innogy as the operator. Dr Dafydd Huws had been inspired by the turbines at CAT and later through visits to Denmark where the technology has been developed further. In 1997 however, npower renewables agreed to assume responsibility for the financing and construction of the wind farm. Trydan Gwynt Cyfyngedig became a co-operative venture between npower renewables, now called RWE Innogy and the Huws family company, Amgen, the welsh for “positive change”. Dr Huws and his company Amgen continue to have, a leading role in the development of the wind farm and its operation.

 

By all accounts this wind farm was remarkably successful, with a good track record of fulfilling its potential, but like all machines they do need maintenance.It was interesting to hear direct from the horses mouth what its like to manage a site such as this, what kind of decisions you have to make when lightening strikes and melts the conductors. Calling crane companies and having to pay them double so they can come lift off the hub and propellers the next day, and get the turbine back in action as quick as possible. These kind of quick financial calculations, mixed in with practical monitoring and maintenance are all part of a days work for a wind farm operational site manager.

 

 

The site was awarded European grant of £1.3m to trial four different types of turbine but today there stands 19 turbines, with two different diameters, as the planning authorities weren’t so happy with the idea of too many different machines scattered across the hills. The planners also ensured that the sub-station, where the electricity is sent into the grid and where the turbines are monitored (with P.C’s STILL running from 1995, a little fact to amaze the techo- heads) is built in a true vernacular style, with stone walls, wooden doors and iron detailing.

 

Myn ydd Gorddu Windfarm
Myn ydd Gorddu Windfarm

 

If you are interested in the performance of these medium sized wind turbines then you may be interested in the following; 7 of the turbines are each rated at 600 kilo Watts with a hub height of 34 metres  and a rotor diameter of 43m. The other 12 are rated at 500kW each with a hub height of 35m and rotor diameter of 41m. The rotors on both turbine sizes turn at an approximate speed of 30 revolutions per minute (rpm), driving a gearbox within the nacelle which is in turn connected to a generator. The turbines start to generate electricity automatically when the wind speed reaches around 11 miles per hour (mph), and achieve maximum output at around 33 mph. They shut down when the wind speed exceeds 56 mph, which is rare. The farm has a combined maximum output of 10.2 megawatts.

 

IMG_9818IMG_9834REBE Students taken notes about the Mynydd Gorddu windfarm.

I have no pretentions of being an engineer, and so many of these technical details the REBE students were avidly scribbling down passed me by and I tuned into the gentle sound of the blades swooshing above me in the cold winter wind and their majestic white silhouettes cutting into the crisp blue sky, a symbol to me of beauty and hope. I was also noticing the red kites sailing high in the sky, the fresh strong blast of cold wind whipping around my ears and noticed a suprising birds nest above one of the windmills doors at the base.

I am interested in the politics and people behind these endeavours and was intrigued to hear how carefully Dr Dafydd Huws tried to maximize the returns to the community by ensuring the windfarm infrastructure spread across more than one owners land. There is a fund, “Cronfa Eleri” that’s administered by Amgen, who have set up the Cronfra Eleri Advisory Committee, ensuring that people who understand the needs of the community decide how the money is spent to provide the widest community benefit. The fund yields about £10,00 a year and in 2011 the fund helped buy a new heating system for a community centre in Ysgoldy Bethlehem, Llandre, a new shed for the local Talybont nursery,  the re-wiring and renovation of the local church in Bontgoch, and towards a new tennis court in conjunction with the Playingfield Society Rhydypennau.

 

the wind blows us back to

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As we wandered back to the coach, we waved good-bye to the beautiful bullocks, (the wind farm was fully integrated with the traditional farming practices of the area, with sheep and cows grazing beneath the turbines) and all looked forward to a delicious lunch awaiting us at CAT. The electricity from the farm traced our steps, passing along a cables supported by wooden poles from Bow street to Machynlleth, carrying clean electricity to the local electricity grid network for use in local homes, schools and businesses.  All in all it had been a very successful trip, but lets see what Alexandra King, a REBE student who came too had to say;

 

An interview with REBE student Alexandra King.
An interview with REBE student Alexandra King.

 

Who are you and what do you do when your not studying at CAT?

 

“I’m Alexandra King. I live and work in Bath. My husband is a consulting engineer, I work with him, mainly as a support at the moment, but hope that after finishing this course, I will be more involved in the engineering design.”

 

Why did you decide to study at CAT?

 

“CAT is the obvious choice – to my knowledge it is the best place in the country to study renewables. Why? For a long time now I was a mecologist by choice. I believe in sustainable lifestyle. We’ve installed PVs on our roof as soon as we had a chance. Renewable energy is clean and available everywhere, even in the most remote locations. It will not run out anytime soon, unlike fossil fuels. And if we start making changes now, by the time we do run out of coal and gas, we should have good enough infrastructure to keep us going. I don’t know if we could slow down the climate change, but there is always hope.”

 

What did you learn from the trip to the windfarm?

“I’ve always liked wind turbines, and this visit just reinforced this affection. They are so elegant and not at all noisy. The footprint of a turbine is very small. I love the possibility of the double use of land (cattle or crops), turbines scale easily, the construction time is relatively short, unfortunately so is the lifespan of a wind farm. But I am sure we can overcome this in the future.

One more thing, I’ve visited several wind farms and yet to see a single dead bird, yet, driving home a few days ago, saw 8 corpses on the motorway…  one of them was a badger, I think, but still.”

 

 

How do you find the teaching on the course, and is there anything you would change about your student experience with CAT?

 

“I love CAT, wouldn’t change a thing. Except I wish I’d started earlier, like several years ago, but never mind now. I think this course is well balanced; it will give me a broad understanding of principles and technologies that will be very useful in my future work.”

 

Many thanks Alexandra !

 

 

Renew Wales wins community category at Wales Green Energy Awards

Renew Wales, a project all about supporting communities developing renewable energy projects in Wales, has won an award in the coveted Wales Green Energy Awards. CAT is a partner in the Renew Wales project, providing training and support. Peter Davis, Sustainable Development Commissioner for Wales commented on the project:

Kit Jones, Media Officer at the Centre for Alternative Technology said:

“Over the next few decades we are going to have to completely overhaul energy infrastructure across Wales. There is a massive opportunity to create a new renewable infrastructure which is widely owned within the local community. This would bring many benefits to the people of Wales. Community Energy is really important for making sure technologies like wind, solar and hydro power which are delivering environmental benefits are also delivering social benefits. We are really pleased that this is being recognised by the Wales Green Energy Awards, and to be part of the project which is leading the way.”