18/05/2017 - RET Publish Offshore Wind Feasibility Report

18 May 2017

A preliminary feasibility study has concluded that offshore wind technology could be viable in several locations off Guernsey’s coast.

The study was carried out by Xodus Group, an engineering consultancy with experience in the oil and gas, utilities and renewable industries, and funded jointly by the States of Guernsey and Guernsey Electricity. It concluded that there are a range of technically feasible options to develop an offshore wind project off Guernsey. Other findings included:

  • Developing a modest project, of the order 30MW, will achieve the fundamental objective of an independent supply of electricity together with the benefits associated with energy diversification namely: security; price certainty; sustainability and lower carbon.
  • The cost is higher than current French importation and on-island generation
  • To mitigate the higher cost it is recommend that the majority of the project is funded by the States of Guernsey to secure the lowest cost of finance.
  • At this early stage of analysis the preferred site is far offshore towards the 12nm boundary. This location is in relatively deep water and most suited to the new floating wind turbine structures.
  • The lowest cost site is likely to be in the shallow waters off the north coast (or any coastal site). However, this near shore location may have visual and other human impact.
  • Consideration should be given to pursuing an extended wave and wind data gathering programme that could be relatively low cost but high value for the future.

The States of Guernsey Renewable Energy Team have been progressing the recommendations following receipt of the report, including the addition of remote sensing equipment at Chouet headland alongside the existing wind monitor.

The Renewable Energy team will seek to continue to progress its work in this area, before discussing the viability of such a project with the Committee for the Environment & Infrastructure in due course.

Deputy Shane Langlois, member of the Committee for the Environment & Infrastructure, said:

‘A 30MW offshore wind farm has the potential to generate around one third of Guernsey’s current electricity requirements. While the cost of electricity generated by wind turbines would, at the moment, be more expensive than importing or on-island generation, it is clear that the gap between the two is narrowing and will likely continue to do so as the technology further evolves. Indeed recent tenders in northern Europe have been at very competitive prices. The Committee welcomes the findings of this study and, while not without risk, believes there are significant opportunities in progressing this work, such as security of supply, energy independence, fixed prices and lower emissions.’

Peter Barnes, Lead Officer for the Renewable Energy Team, said:

‘Wind technology is continuing to mature and will offer increased levels of security and independence of supply. Guernsey is well positioned to benefit from those developments and the Renewable Energy Team will continue working closely with Guernsey Electricity to further develop the potential opportunities identified.’

Stuart Blondel, Head of Assets at Guernsey Electricity, said:

‘Guernsey Electricity continues to monitor and assess all forms of renewable energy and energy storage technologies. Our strategic planning takes account of the island’s aspirations for energy diversification and security at an affordable price. We believe community based macro scale renewable generation as identified in this study combined with suitable means of energy storage will be a commercially viable option within the 2020s and, combined with careful management of energy demand and other forms of embedded energy harnessing, the island will achieve its aims for a sustainable future’

The full study can be downloaded from our documents page.

01/04/17 - RET releases 2017 strategy and review of 2016

1 Apr 2017
The Renewable Energy Team have now published their strategy for 2017 (and beyond) along with a review of the year 2016.

As in previous years the strategy can be downloaded in 2 forms - a 4 page summary and a detailed 25 page document. The Strategy is reviewed and updated annually and as part of the review a document outlining the work from the previous year is formed.

The 2017 Strategy and 2016 review documents can be downloaded from http://www.guernseyrenewableenergy.com/about/About-RET.aspx.

01/08/2016 - Congratulations to Bouke Wiersma on completion of his Public Engagement PhD in Guernsey

1 Aug 2016

Bouke Wiersma has completed his PhD into public opinions towards renewable energy in Guernsey. He used Guernsey as an example of island territories and Guernsey’s renewable energy team has been working closely with him since the start of his PhD 3 and a half years ago.

The study was broken down into 3 data gathering studies, the results of which are available from our documents page, using a variety of traditional and novel sampling methods. The work has been and will continue to be used to inform RET’s strategy going forward.

Bouke successfully defended his viva in February and has now completed the write up of his thesis. Bouke will be sending copies of the thesis to the people who have been both directly involved in the research (participants) and those who have been of significant help to the thesis more generally. The Thesis is also available to download from the University of Exeter website via the following link - https://ore.exeter.ac.uk/repository/handle/10871/21565.

RET would like to thank Bouke for the work he has done and working so closely with us to get the best research for Guernsey as well as for his PhD. Also many thanks to his PhD supervisor Professor Patrick Devine-Wright who has been very willing to provide his time and expertise as part of the PhD.

Many congratulations again to Bouke for the completion of his PhD, and for all the hard work he has put in.

Bouke's Graduation - Professor Patrick Devine-Wright and Bouke Wiersma

21/07/2016 - Working with Universities – Update

21 Jul 2016
RET have continued to work closely with Universities over the past year, with a number of student projects either underway or recently completed with the University of Exeter, Cranfield University, Plymouth University and the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris.

RET are keen to continue and further these links and are always keen to engage with students on projects relating to Guernsey. RET are already considering projects for the next academic year so please get in contact (enquiries@guernseyrenewableenergy.com ) if you have an interest in undertaking a project with us.

For information on previous work with Universities please visit our “Working with Universities” page, where you can find previously completed projects, including the latest offshore wind project undertaken with University of Exeter Student Thomas Newitt.

01/05/2016 - Renewable energy work under new Committee

1 May 2016
On May 1st the structure of Guernsey's Government changed. There are fewer Deputies (a reduction from 45 to 38) and six Principal Committees rather than ten Departments. For more information on the changes to the structure of government in Guernsey please see https://gov.gg/article/153106/Constitution-of-the-States-of-Deliberation-and-Committee-Responsibilities.

As part of the change the renewable energy workstream has moved from the Commerce and Employment department (replaced by the new Committee for Economic Development) to the new Committee for Environment and Infrastructure. Renewable energy now sits under the same committee as all energy policy and maritime affairs.