Scottish Government invests a further £1.5 million in offshore wind technology as our renewables energy generation booms.



As you know, the prospect of reliable 100% electricity generation by 2030 is now a real likelihood. See:

Scotland’s energy 100% renewable by 2030?

By 2030 when Scotland should be able to power all its homes and industry with renewables energy, all of the fossil-fuel job losses could be replaced there.

Offshore windfarms, like the currently under-construction Beatrice field in the Moray Firth, have particular advantages. Stanford University has summarised them:

  1. The first and most immediately compelling advantage of floating offshore wind is access to incredible wind resource over deep waters. Currently we can only access a small fraction of the offshore wind resource worldwide due to depth constraints.
  2. Offshore wind is recognized for its proximity to load centers but often still encounters significant NIMBY (“Not In My Back Yard”) resistance. Population centers tend to cluster near the coastlines, so offshore wind minimizes the distance from generation to load centers, without competing for valuable land. Opponents argue, however, that turbines negatively impact the skyline (visual pollution) or result in disruptive noise. Floating turbines address these concerns by allowing wind farms to be pushed farther offshore and out of sight.
  3. Finally, there are also several manufacturing advantages to floating platforms, such as using less material in construction and reducing the need for specialty marine engineering expertise. One major cost driver for conventional offshore wind are the heavy lift vessels required to erect the turbine. Very expensive special purpose ships are required to transport the parts on site and perform the assembly. Floating turbine platforms, however, are designed to be assembled in port and towed into position using simple barges or tugboats. This can result in major cost savings and greatly increased flexibility in construction.

Presumably recognising these particular advantages of offshore wind farms, the Scottish Government has invested a further £1.5 million (as last year) to further develop the technology in the form of the Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator (OWA) programme – which brings together developers in a bid to make offshore wind an even more affordable source of power. This comes on top of £43 million already invested in numerous other renewable energy projects this year:


7 thoughts on “Scottish Government invests a further £1.5 million in offshore wind technology as our renewables energy generation booms.

  1. macgilleleabhar August 3, 2017 / 6:20 pm

    This should fit in nicely with the progress towards electric traction in road vehicles.
    After all whats the point of using them if the electricity is being generated by steam boilers and turbines as Parsons did in 1884 and producing pollution regardless of whether it is fossil fueled or nuclear ?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ludo Thierry August 3, 2017 / 7:33 pm

    Hi John – Hi all – Couldn’t agree more MacGilleleabhar – it surely has to be the sensible way to move forward. First we work out appropriate ways to tap into the huge sustainable electricity generation sources. Next we bring the current big polluters (Transport being a big one) and find best ways to use the sustainable electricity to replace the polluting energy sources currently in use.

    Not wanting to go off topic but rather mentioning another area of Hi Technology in which Scotland shows excellence – namely Bio Pharma. I saw this item on the Beeb website Scottish Business page and nowhere else yet. I feel it is worth drawing to folks’ attention.

    The Scottish Biotech firm TCBioPharm (TCB) has been awarded 4M Euro (£3.6M) by an EU fund to develop next generation cancer therapies. To work on ‘autologous’ cell therapy which aims to treat patients with their own cells. Their therapy is due for first use in 2019.

    This project was one of only 57 selected from 1,500 applications to the EU Horizon 2020 programme.

    This is the largest EU grant of its kind for development of a healthcare/therapeutic product.

    TCB added that the grant would allow it to develop its ‘allogenic’ approach (manufacturing treatments using existing cells from donors stored in a bio-bank). Working with clinical centres in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Oxford, Southampton, London and Cardiff.

    TCB has raised more than £22.4M since starting up in Feb 2014. It has premises in Glasgow, Edinburgh and London employing more than 50 staff.

    Please note a couple of things here which the BBC report somehow neglects to mention.

    The funding of £3.6M is coming from the EU to a Scottish company (That’s the same EU which Scotland voted to remain part of and which the Tory Westminster Govt and Lab opposition are jointly in process of ripping Scotland out of. The same EU which the SNP Scottish Govt is exploring every avenue to keep us attached to in whatever form possible). Would have thought that might have been worth a mention in the passing BBC?

    Note also: TCBioPharm were established in Feb 2014. That was the run up to the Indyref. I seem to remember the BBC (and others) reporting as gospel the rubbish spouted by Better Together re. an investment and start up ‘drought’ as business and investors wouldn’t contemplate investing in the face of the possibility of a democratic choice being made for Independence. Well, well, well – seems as if TCB found willing investors and had the confidence in the future of Scotland to set itself up despite all the unionist propaganda. Having done so it is now moving its projects towards the market with strong EU financial backing.

    Thought that might have been an interesting context for the story to be framed within – suspect that’s why I’ll never be head-hunted by the good old beeb.

    Cheers all, Ludo

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Contrary August 3, 2017 / 8:57 pm

    Good news about the success on that grant for TCB, Ludo. How does the company fit in with the grand scheme with the NHS, do you know? Are they a high tech pharmaceutical company? I have often wondered why the NHS doesn’t have a pharmaceutical branch – I know it costs a lot to develop drugs, but it is a huge massive very profitable industry, you could supply your own health service ‘free’, and sell for big profits abroad – or save poor starving children abroad if you wanted to?

    Liked by 1 person

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