Utility Week

UTILITY Week 10th October 2014

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

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UtILItY WeeK | 10th - 16th OctOber 2014 | 31 Community Disconnector Editor: ellen bennett, t: 01342 332084, e: ellen.bennett@fav-house.com; News editor: Jillian Ambrose, t: 01342 332061, e: jillian.ambrose@fav-house.com; Associate news editor: Mathew beech, t: 01342 332082, e: mathew.beech@fav-house. com; Energy correspondent: Joyeeta Basu, t: 01342 332110, e: joyeeta.basu@fav-house. com; Insights editor: Jane Gray, t: 01342 332087, e: jane.gray@fav-house.com; Production editor: Paul Newton, e: paul.newton@fav-house.com; Business development manager: Ed Roberts, t: 01342 332067, e: ed.roberts@fav-house.com; Sales executive: Hayley Cronin, t: 01342 332077, e: hayley.cronin@fav-house.com; Publisher: Amanda barnes, e: amanda.barnes@fav-house.com. General enquiries: 01342 332000; Subscriptions: UK £577 per year, Overseas £689 per year, t: 020 8955 7045. ISSN: 1356-5532. Registered as a newspaper at the Post Office. Printed by: Buxton Press, Palace Road, Buxton, Derbyshire SK17 6AE. Published by: Faversham house Ltd, Windsor court, Wood Street, east Grinstead, West Sussex rh19 1UZ Grand designs We are all of us in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars! The great man waxes poetical on seeing the concept visu- alisations of a marine-powered dwelling produced by London- based architect Margot Kraso- jevic. Admittedly more of a big picture visionary than an actual engineer, Margot has not wasted her time faffing around with tidal hubs and the like. What she's come up with is a concept design worthy of Thunderbirds: a futuristic seagoing house that moves with the tides. The Hydroelectric Tidal House aims to harness the "con- sistent and powerful movement of waves" to generate energy. Margot explains that the con- struction would focus on two shells – one inner and one outer. The outer section would be stationary, while the inner shell moved like a turbine to capture the power of the tides. For stability, she's designed the outer shell in concrete, which should help with costs but won't contribute much to buoyancy (at least by Disconnec- tor's reckoning). The great man is inclined to send Ms Krasojevic's drawings Disconnector to the boys at Pelamis Wave Power and tell them they'd bet- ter up their game, or the next time they're wrestling one of their huge torpedo-like marine devices into the North Sea, they might find themselves in the wash of one of Margot's circular concrete houses as it cruises by. Taken with a pinch of salt While we're on the subject of ideas that obviously won't work, how about German energy stor- age company Nanoflowcell's electric car? Unique selling point: it's powered by saltwater. Yup, the Quant e-Sport- limousine sports a Nanoflowcell propulsion system that the com- pany claims is capable of speeds of 350km/h and acceleration of 0-100km/h in just 2.8 seconds, and can travel 600km with a full tank of fuel made from a salt- water solution. The concept made its debut at the Geneva Motor Show this year, where apparently it was met with "some scepticism by critics", according to news reports. No kidding. Nonetheless, the company claims that development of the car is promising and that it has received serious interest from technology firms and car makers. If so, it occurs to Disconnec- tor that this could put the mock- ers on Margot's floating concrete house. There's not much point harnessing the power of the sea if you can generate electricity from seawater. What have you heard? Among all this dizzying opti- mism about limitless energy, a timely reminder about the best- laid plans of mice and men has been served up by the Royal Society in its new journal Open Science. It published research from a team of scientists from the University of Munich into the potentially damaging effects of low frequency noise, such as that produced by, um, windfarms. Apparently a normal healthy human ear emits a constant hum as part of the hearing process, and this hum gives a good indication of the health of the inner ear. When a selection of 21 vol- unteers was subjected to just 90 seconds of low frequency noise, this hum was altered "drastically", indicating that something serious is going on in the internal structures of the ear. "We don't know what happens if you are exposed for longer periods of time, [for example] if you live next to a wind turbine and listen to these sounds for months or years," said the lead author of the report, Dr Marcus Drexl. So apart from ruining picture postcard landscapes and littering the surrounding area with the corpses of bats, windfarms now stand accused of making you deaf. And they seemed like such a good idea. 3,580 Average circulation Jan–Dec 2013 Subscriptions: UK £577 per year, Overseas £689 per year fhcustomerservices@ abacusemedia.com Jessica Lennard @JessicaLennard First meeting of new @DECCgovuk @ofgem independent supplier forum yesterday. V. encouraging – let's get some balance into policy making! Emily Gosden @emilygosden Gov't slashes gas price forecasts for rest of the decade, undermining its case for expensive wind farms & nuclear: 3WhitehallPlace @3WhitehallPlace Today we've published a book of cold recipes ideal for meals between 4pm-8pm during winter by Antony Worrall Thompson Sean Batty @SeanBattySTV Launched the @scottish_water winter campaign yesterday. Well timed as it starts to feel a bit cooler! Tim Probert @TimProbert PAC gives DECC a slap on the botty & says 'Next time you convert Drax to biomass etc, be more careful' David Ward @DavidWardMP Fab 'Poo power' project unveiled at Esholt treatment works in #Bradford by @YorkshireWater Labour Environment @LabourDefra Did @David_Cameron forget the climate change section in his speech? #CPC14 Wil Barber @wilbarber Last week he called Climate Change "one of the most serious threats facing our world". Today it was only mentioned in a throw away line James Beard @JamesBeardREA There was the green bit! Four words: "Leading on climate change". Evidence? #cpc14 Paul Waugh @paulwaugh Free chocs in media room at Tory conference. Who says we can't be bought? Begs a time lapse sequence over nxt 24hrs Top Tweets

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