North East project testing effectiveness of energy storage technology

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With increasing quantities of renewable electricity coming on to the power grid there is a growing need to develop technologies to store this energy for later use. When the wind blows too strongly operators are currently paid large sums of money to switch their turbines off – with the cost being borne by the bill-payer, says the Journal.

This is neither satisfactory to the consumer, or the Government, and is driving efforts to develop large-scale, energy storage systems.

Energy giants pocket £75m of green tax cuts which would have helped millions of households save £50 on their energy bills

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Millions of households have missed out on a £50 saving on their energy bill because a green tax cut has been swiped by suppliers.

All of the big six firms — British Gas, EDF Energy, Eon, Npower, Scottish and Southern Energy and Scottish Power — will save money this year after the Government slashed network charges and the cost of implementing green schemes.

And they will no longer have to pick up the tab for a Warm Home Discount — which gives vulnerable customers a £135 reduction on their electricity bill, according to This is money.

Npower Hatches Nest Deal As Energy Row Rages

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One of Britain's biggest energy companies has struck a deal with a Google-owned smart technology provider amid the raging debate about rising energy prices.

Sky News understands that Npower, which is owned by the German utility RWE, will announce this week a partnership with Nest Labs, a connected devices-maker which was acquired by Google for more than £2bn.

The alliance will see Npower become the exclusive energy company partner of Nest in the UK, and comes as the big energy suppliers step up their investment in smart-metering technology.

Top tips for Save Energy Week

Did you know that if every home in the UK switched one old lightbulb to a new LED one, it would be the equivalent of taking 73,000 cars off the road?

This year Earth Day, on the 22nd April, happens in the middle of Save Energy Week, a new initiative designed to encourage us all to help reduce climate change by making small energy saving measures in the home.

Here are a few facts from the research and top tips to help you save energy in your home:

Energy efficiency deals for property owners in the UK extended and upgraded

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Changes to the UK government’s Green Deal cash back scheme aimed at getting property owners to improve the energy efficiency of their homes have been announced.

The scheme helps people to install energy efficiency measures by providing them with money back on the contributions they make towards improvements.

The changes include increases to the amount of money consumers get back on some Green Deal measures, such as double glazing, solid wall insulation and room in roof insulation for those with loft conversions.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change is also extending the scheme. Applications for Green Deal Cash back can now be submitted up to the end of June, with a further three months for households to install energy efficiency measures and redeem cash back vouchers, giving them more time to take advantage of the scheme.

UK 'split personality' energy usage behaviour between work and home

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The results of a survey from OnePoll and Rexel reveals that 48 per cent of the British public would describe themselves as energy conscious at home, whereas only 20 per cent would say the same about their behavior in the workplace, according to realbusiness.co.uk

This apparent “split personality” around energy usage is again highlighted by the differences in their concern for energy wastage. Over 70 per cent claim that they are concerned about wasting energy at home, whilst only 43 per cent worry about wastage at work.

These findings found that the majority of employees actively charge their personal devices at work instead of using energy at home, with 32 per cent admitting to daily charging sessions and 36 per cent charging multiple devices.

Tidal power lagoon planned for Wales

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• The six-mile wall around Swansea Bay, complete with turbines, could generate electricity 14 hours a day and save 236,000 tonnes of carbon a year
• £750million project, along with four others could meet 10 per cent of the UK's electricity needs from the tides by 2023
• Developer Tidal Lagoon Power believes the project will boost a UK supply chain, create a new export market and plenty of jobs if it gets the go-ahead

According to the http://www.dailymail.co.uk Plans have been submitted to develop the world's first tidal lagoon energy project in the UK.

And the ground-breaking project could provide renewable power for 120,000 homes in Swansea, Wales for 120 years.

Developers behind the £750million to £850million Swansea Bay project believe it could be the first step in developing lagoon technology that could meet 10 per cent of the UK's electricity needs from the tides.

100% solar homes available in the UK

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A house builder and a renewable energy technology supplier have joined forces to launch a new limited company, the Zero Carbon Solution, which will provide an affordable out-of-the-box energy system for domestic new-builds and low-rise commercial developments.

The system combines three core technologies, hybrid PV-T solar collectors, a patented inter-seasonal energy store and a heat pump, the system can meet a building’s full heating and hot water requirements all year round, using only solar power.

Following the successful installation of the system into a pilot project, known as the Solar House, the team has received a high level of enquiries into possible applications for the technology. The Solar House gained international recognition for being the UK’s first commercially built fully solar-powered new-build home.

Renewable Heat Incentive poised for spring launch

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The government is hoping to support up to 16,000 solar thermal systems in the first year of the new domestic Renewable Heat Incentive scheme due to launch later this year.

Speaking at the first of the 2014 Solar Energy UK roadshows today, Steve Roberts, part of the RHI team at the Department of Energy and Climate Change, said this was the target figure for the long-awaited scheme’s first year, with more expected the following year.

The 2014 Solar Energy UK roadshows kicked off in Esher, Surrey, beginning the annual event’s six-venue tour of the UK.

Top tips for saving energy in the home

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Energy savers recommend starting small, appreciating the savings and then doing some more.

Jill Goulder, for example, an archaeologist who lives in a late-19th-century terrace in Lewes has, over the years, reduced her bills by hundreds of pounds. “One of my favourite 'easy wins’ is acrylic secondary glazing, attached to frames with a magnetic strip. It’s unobtrusive, easy to install and stops draughts dead. It’s only about £60 a window,” she says (diyplas.co.uk).