Wednesday, May 30, 2007

All-Energy 2007 - "but because it is haaard"

Another May, another All-Energy conference in Aberdeen.

Over the years, the mood seems to have gone up and down at All-Energy, but vibe this year was very positive. Over the years the suit count has increased, but the last couple of years had a rather downbeat feel, as if the renewables community was reaching the conclusion that this was all too difficult.

This year, there was a certain resolution amongst the attendees, as if the industry had collectively adopted Jack Kennedy's ethos - "we chose to do these things, not because they are easy, but because they are haaard".

The release of the Energy White Paper, which I'll be blogging on later, added a frisson of excitement, and the full range of renewables were well represented. By all accounts, we matched the total attendance from last year by lunchtime on the first day!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Scottish Power and Hammerfest Strom

The tidal industry really seems to be picking up momentum, as Scottish Power announces that it has formed a new company to pursue a tidal opportunity in the Pentland Firth, using the technology tested by Statoil in the Hammerfest Strom project. Details from Scottish Power are here.

The press release talks about testing in Scottish Waters (EMEC anyone?), before an international roll out of the technology.

Sounds like the three years testing in Hammerfest has been pretty successful.

Monday, May 07, 2007

OPT taking on water?

Ocean Power Technology, developers of the Power Buoy, successfully closed a $100 million IPO last week at $20/share.

Since then, the shares have fallen to $17.50, suggesting little support at these levels.

It's early days, but let's hope that the sentiment turns and the shares prove a sound investment - the better to stimulate investment in the sector.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Scottish election result determined by Lewis windfarm shock!

So, it seems that the Scottish election has just been conceded by Labour to the Scottish National Party, with the SNP taking 47 seats, and the Labour party 46.

The interesting part here is that the (now former) Western Isles MSP, Alasdair Morrison, said that he supported the proposed Barvas Moor windfarm whereas his SNP opponent said that he supported a local referendum on the windfarm. The seat swung to the SNP (with 687 votes determining the outcome). So if 344 people voted on the basis of the windfarm, that was the determining factor in the Government of Scotland for the next 4 years.

Let's hope Alex Salmond can do a decent job, and can find ways to drive renewables forward north of the border without having to cut other expenditure or raise taxes too much!