I have been involved for some time in discussions with departments and agencies on the way micro hydro schemes are regulated and on other matters affecting their development. I have now drafted a paper which proposes ways to lessen the burden both for potential scheme owners and developers, and for agencies and planning authorities.
It is alarming that the few suppliers with real experience are now abandoning micro hydro owing largely to the delays and complexities of the red tape - hundreds of valuable schemes risk delay or abandonment otherwise.
Please contribute your comments and ideas in response to this entry.
I have to wholeheartedly agree. I am trying to set up my own 8 kw scheme, but it is taking a ridiculous amount of time to wade through all the red tape requirements. I'm also trying to hold down a job at the same time and its not easy!
Sorry forgot to say anything positive! A standard application form for schemes under a certain power level would be good from Sepa and Planning. And a requirement from the Service Provider to shorten the length of time that they need to assess whether they have the grid capacity for small generation. I've been waiting nearly 3 months.
Excellent paper, the UK is certainly missing out due to the difficulties of paperwork associated with micro hydro schemes and lack of government initiatives to aid these schemes effectively. The recent weather pattern changes are encouraging for micro hydro generators, therefore more schemes should be encouraged not only to utilise the natural power to reduce reliance on fossil fuels but also to create nationwide employment. I also believe continued research should be made by universities and installers to ensure turbine installation products are not only efficient to generate electricity to the grid, but also sympathetic to UK waterways and ecology resulting in a healthy balance between power generation and a healthy biodiverse ecosystem.
Excellent. I like the clarity of the approach and agree that this would sigfinicantly grow the number of schemes being developed. I also really like the change to the funding process which in a single stroke removes the capital barrier issue and alleviates the pressure on FITs
There's a couple of obvious flaws to this paper. It's based on nothing more than experience and is riddled with common sense.
Another comment from a micro hydro installer:
In no particular order and with several comments being general observations and not directly linked to this excellent proposal:
Comment from a potential generator (ex forestry manager):
Clearly a well considered and well researched paper which I think we all hope will bring benefits. There are one or two things I think need tweaking, 16m2 turbine house has already been mentioned and 10km catchment (on low head sites) would preclude most. However at this point I would support the document "as is" and see what sort of response it gets from the powers that be. The industry has come a long way in the last 10 years and I'm still convinced there is a huge untapped potential out there not only to reduce our carbon footprint but to genuinely create jobs and new businesses. As touched upon in the paper, education and dissemination of knowledge is a key factor and we must push for college courses, apprentices , scholarships or whatever else is needed to encourage new blood and save us old f*rts running round like headless chickens. Well done Gavin for spending the time and energy on this.
Leave a Reply.
To have changes to the News pages notified to your email account we suggest you might sign up to Blogtrotter here. Simply copy the link (URL) below and paste it into the appropriate field in Blogtrotter and add your email address.
This is a blog to replace the Latest News Page for the Micro Hydro Association so that you can use the RSS feed below. Previous News is still kept on the Home Page. From Administrator.