The Advice Notes aim to provide introductory material for entrepreneurs, startups and SME’s, considering to enter into the renewable energy sphere and based in the NPA regions partners to GREBE. The scope of the Advice Note covers regional, trade and industry, renewable energy (RE), technology information from Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Iceland and Finland. Different partner regions have different level of deployment of the various RE technologies covered by the Advice Notes. Thus, the level of information will vary depending on the level of deployment for each technology. For example, wind is not deployed on a large scale in North Karelia (Finland); however, it is widely deployed in Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Full details are available on the GREBE website:
The focus of the Advice Notes is on regional information of some of the main economic characteristics sited as imperative, when making an informed choice, regarding which RE technology may be the optimal choice for a new business venture:
- Costs and economics associated with the relevant technology
- Support schemes available, relevant to the technology
- Government allowance/exemptions, relevant to the technology
- Funding available for capital costs of the relevant technology
- List of the relevant to the technology suppliers/developers, with focus on local/regional, suppliers/developers and the products and services they offer.
Solar thermal systems use solar collectors to absorb energy from the sun and transfer it, using heat exchangers, to heat water. Solar thermal delivers hot water at temperatures of between 55ºC and 65ºC. This is a comparatively mature technology and many installations date back to the 1970s. There are two main types of solar heating collectors:
- Flat-plate collectors – a sheet of black metal, that absorbs the sun’s energy, encases the collector system. Water is fed through the system in pipes, which conduct the heat to the water.
- Evacuated tubes – a series of parallel glass heat tubes grouped together. Each tube contains an absorber tube enclosed within a vacuum. Sunlight passing through the outer glass tube heats the absorber tube contained within it, and in doing so, the heat is transferred to a liquid flowing through the tubes.
Evacuated tubes are the most efficient type of solar water collector at around 80% efficiency (compared to around 70% for flat plate collectors). Correspondingly, they also cost more to manufacture; thus, they are more expensive. Modern solar thermal technologies are dependable, efficient and completely safe. Solar thermal technology can have up to 80% efficiency rate in delivering heat to your business.
Taxi drivers and operators of other public service vehicles are set to benefit from a new €7,000 grant scheme aimed at encouraging them to opt for electric vehicles. Minister for Transport, Shane Ross, has announced a new incentive scheme offering a €7,000 grant towards the purchase of an electric vehicle for those with a small public service vehicle (SPSV) licence. That grant is on top of the existing electric car incentives – the €5,000 rebate on vehicle registration tax, a €3,800 grant from the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), and the upcoming new grant from the SEAI for installing a home-charging point.
The Department of Transport grant applies to any fully electric vehicle up to six years old, although the amount reduces according to the age of the car. A smaller €3,500 grant applies if you want to buy a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) for taxi use, but only those with Co2 emissions lower than 65g/km. Conventional hybrids are excluded.
The move is the latest in a series of measures being introduced by the Government to promote electric car ownership. Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe introduced a one-year exemption on benefit in kind for electric vehicles in the budget, and it is expected that the exemption will be rolled out for at least three years, including a suspension of any benefit in kind levied on charging your electric car at work.
Meanwhile, Minister for the Environment Denis Naughten has stated that he is looking at other ways to encourage an increase in the move to electric vehicles, including making motorways tolls free for electric cars and banning sales of any non-hybrid or electric car from 2030 onwards. However, the current financial incentives are still not having much effect. Electric cars accounted for a paltry 0.25 per cent of the market last year, with just 622 sold in total in a total new car market of 131,335.
Many regions of the NPA have some of the best renewable energy resources; however in many cases they are not being effectively exploited. The Case Studies aim to address this by the assessment of a range of renewable energy technologies to determine the drivers and barriers for their transferability to other areas in the NPA where the same renewable energy resource are available but are not widely exploited.
The Case Studies exemplify how, through the proper identification of appropriate and scaled technological solutions, renewable energy resources in each partner region, can meet the demands of energy markets. The technology case studies were informed by engagement with technology providers and other relevant stakeholders. The focus of the case studies is on technological choices (details of how these operate, innovations etc.), funding mechanisms, processes of delivery and adaptation in different partner regions, assessment of technical and financial risks, and demonstration/piloting routines.
The case study collection provides evidence and data on important drivers and barriers and an in-depth analysis of the Renewable Energy technologies feasibility prospect to be transferred across partner regions. The case studies cover technologies, market access and business growth paths.
These cases studies are based on the following technologies:
Further information can be found on the case studies section under the publications page here: http://grebeproject.eu/publication/
The Finnish GREBE project partners Luke and Karelia UAS visited Itikan tila farm in the region of Northern Savo in Finland. The farm visited will be a case study for the GREBE project on hybrid energy solutions used in energy production.
The farm is a seed producer since the 1970´s, but the ownership dates back until 1905, however, nowadays energy production plays an important role of the farm´s business. The energy production on the farm includes an own biodiesel production unit, a wind turbine, solar panels and a ground source heat pump.
The bio-oil production is used mainly to produce heat for heating and drying of grain, but also as fuel for two tractors and a harvesting machine. The production is based on rape seed oil and vegetable and frying oils from the industry in the region. The rape residues can be processed to briquettes as cattle feed on the farm. Briquettes are also produced from straw, cutter shavings and saw dust from the local wood processing industry and mainly used for combustion in a municipal district heating scheme in the region.
The hybrid energy solution for the farm includes a 5 kW wind power plant since 2015. The energy produced is used to heat water in an accumulator. In addition to the energy production, the wind mill is an important component for the demonstration.
The farm has invested two years ago into a solar PV plant with a capacity of 10 kW. The produced electricity is transferred directly to the electricity grid. The farm used heat exchangers and heat recovery systems in many places on the farm, LED lights are the favored light option.
Another energy source is based on a ground sources heat pump system (30kW). All in all, the farm has an energy consumption of approximately 150 000 kWh, especially for seed processing and drying.
The farm is also part of the e-farm network which for example organizes visits to energy producing farms. The Itikan farm has several visitor groups each month.
The GREBE project will prepare a case study report about the Itikan farm which will then be available as good example case for hybrid energy solution for the Northern Periphery regions and GREBE partner countries.