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European Investment Bank Backs Humber Gateway With GBP 82 Million

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Wind farm by Lollipop (flickr name) via Dropbox

The European Investment Bank has agreed to provide GBP 82 million for the purchase, operation and maintenance of a new electricity transmission connection between the Humber Gateway offshore windfarm and the UK national electricity network.

The new Humber Gateway transmission link will connect the 73 turbine 220 MW Humber Gateway windfarm to the mainland transmission grid at Hedon, and includes an onshore substation in Hull an offshore substation and 40km of mostly undersea cables.

“Investment to harness the UK’s offshore wind resources provides clean energy and is creating thousands of skilled jobs across the country. Offshore transmission connections are a key part of the UK’s future energy infrastructure and the European Investment Bank is pleased to support significant new investment to connect the Humber Gateway windfarm to the national network. This new scheme represents the tenth UK offshore transmission link supported by Europe’s long-term lending institution over the last 5 years.” said Jonathan Taylor, European Investment Bank Vice President.

The European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank, owned directly by the 28 European Union member states and one of the world’s largest lenders for renewable energy related investment. Over the last decade the European Investment Bank has provided more than GBP 3.2 billion for investment in UK energy infrastructure. This has included support for investment in 10 different transmission connections to windfarms in UK waters in the North Sea and Irish Sea since 2011.

The 19 year long-term EIB loan will be provided to Humber Gateway OFTO Ltd and the consortium behind the transmission link project comprises Balfour Beatty and Equitix.

Financing provided by the European Investment Bank represents nearly 50% of eligible project costs and the long-term EIB loan is alongside senior debt provided by three commercial banks, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank and Societe Generale.

Earlier this year the European Investment Bank agreed to provide GBP 77 million to support the transmission link to the Westermost Rough windfarm located 8 kilometres north east of Withernsea off the Holderness coast.

In the UK, separate Offshore Transmission Owners (OFTOs) take responsibility for offshore transmission assets under long-term OFTO licences. Since its launch in 2009, the OFTO regime has helped to attract significant investment and is managed under a regulatory framework overseen by energy market regulator Ofgem. Under the OFTO regime investors are not directly exposed to construction risks as the transmission assets are only transferred after construction completion.

Other long-term investment in Yorkshire supported by the European Investment Bank includes the Green Port in Hull, investment by Yorkshire Water, the universities of Hull and York, schools in Barnsley, Bradford and Sheffield.  and upgrading hospitals in Wakefield and Pontefract.

Lending by the EIB in the UK last year totalled GBP 5.6 billion and represented the largest annual engagement since the start of EIB lending in the UK in 1973. This supported nearly GBP 16 billion of overall investment in 40 projects across the UK, which schools, university campuses, hospitals, upgraded energy links, renewable energy projects and water infrastructure.

Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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