Utility Week

Utility Week 8 July issue

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4 | 8TH - 14TH JULY 2016 | UTILITY WEEK Solar systems in the spotlight The Solar Trade Association launched an initiative to raise standards in the maintenance of large rooftop and ground-mounted solar systems, as it celebrated its third 'Solar Independence Day' last week. 12GW Estimated capacity of photovoltaic systems now installed in the UK. 23.9% Amount of electricity generated by solar in June – a new UK record. 800k Number of UK homes with photovoltaic generation. 200k Number of UK homes with solar thermal generation. 1 million Number of 'solar homes' in the UK. STORY BY NUMBERS Interconnection 'crucial' for UK energy security Seven days... I ncreased interconnection between the UK and Europe is vital to ensuring security of energy supply, and should be a "crucial question" in the Brexit debate, former shadow energy minister Alan Whitehead has insisted. Whitehead also expressed concern that the prospect of negotiating the right levels of interconnection were "fairly remote". Speaking at the Utility Week Energy Summit in Westminster, Whitehead said: "We've still got to have substantial interconnec- tions and also substantial back- up capacity across the system and that is where I think Brexit is a particular issue. "I would particularly home in on interconnection as far as what I think is going to be a real problem. Where we can actually manage negotiations to remain in the European energy market, the prospect of getting the levels of interconnection we need to back up the system are fairly remote." He highlighted that supply from interconnection in the UK would need to increase from current levels of 3 per cent up to 12 per cent over the next period. "I can't see that anybody is going to start developing one end of an interconnector that's going to face difficulties halfway to the UK," he added. Energy minister and prime ministerial candidate Andrea Leadsom also spoke at the event, but did not offer an opin- ion on future interconnections in the UK. "Energy security is and always will be non-negotiable, it is our top priority," she said. SJ "Completely illogical and totally at odds with government policy" GB Energy Supply has slammed a recommendation from the Competition and Markets Authority to remove the confidence code for price comparison websites. National media Toxic waste water blamed for fish deaths Toxic waste water from a huge steel plant run by Taiwanese Formosa Plastics caused massive fish deaths in April, Vietnam's govern- ment has said. Formosa Ha Tinh Steel admitted that toxic water released into the sea had caused the deaths, Viet- namese officials told a news con- ference. The company has agreed to pay $500 million (£371 million) in compensation, they said. BBC News, 30 June Philippines 'can't afford to ditch coal' The Philippines will retain coal as a core part of its electricity genera- tion mix due to its dependability, though it will seek to boost the use of cleaner fuels and renew- able energy, the country's energy minister has said. The southeast Asian nation aims to double its power genera- tion capacity by 2030 to avoid a return to the frequent blackouts of the 1990s. "Coal is the more depend- able, the more reliable source for base load," said energy secretary Alfonso Cusi. "As a developing country we cannot afford not to have coal." Reuters, 4 July Fall in bank lending to Australian renewables Australia's big four banks' lending for Australian renewable energy projects has tumbled in the first half of 2016. Based on public announce- ments from the banks and their customers, activist group Market Forces has found only two financ- ing deals were closed this year in the Australian renewables sector. National Australia Bank lent money to a windfarm in South Aus- tralia and NAB and Westpac helped finance one in New South Wales. The Guardian, 4 July

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