Welcome to the EKAF website home page. Here you will find the latest information regarding EKAF activities and the most recent newsletter. Many local news updates are also published on our Facebook pages here
Drill or Drop
National and International news is updated almost daily on Ruth Hayhurst’s excellent “Drill or Drop” website here.
Government & Frackers
Confirmation of the Government’s close links with the frackers is contained within this excellent interactive infographic:
Green energy Suppliers
It’s now very easy to switch from the traditional energy suppliers to a green energy supplier. Obviously EKAF does not have any kind of financial stake in any energy provider, but the following link might help you switch to a renewable source of energy: www.unfrack.me
newsletter-5 October 2016
Green gas could heat majority of homes in Britains, says Ecotricity
Ecotricity has revealed new plans that could heat 97 per cent of homes in Britain using green gas made from grass. The plans were released today within a new report from the independent green supplier. The report found that, by 2035, almost all homes in Britain could be heated by the green gas from grass – creating an industry worth £7.5 billion annually for the economy. The supplier has received planning permission to build a prototype of the first-of-a-kind green gas mill at Sparsholt College in Hampshire. Ecotricity said the green gas production will be “virtually carbon neutral” and could play a significant role in Britain meeting its climate targets.
Ecotricity founder Dale Vince said: “As North Sea reserves run out, the big question is where we’re going to get our gas from next. The government thinks fracking is the answer, but this new report shows there is a better option.“Recently, it’s become possible to make green gas and put it into the grid, in the same way we’ve been doing with green electricity for the last two decades. The current way of doing that is through energy crops and food waste – but both have their drawbacks. “Our first green gas mill has just been given the go-ahead, and we hope to build it soon – though that does depend on whether government energy policy will support this simple, benign and abundant energy source. I call on Theresa May to review the government’s plan for where Britain gets its gas – post-North Sea.”The supplier also highlighted in its report that the green gas could help Britain to become energy independent, support food production by improving soils, and allow farmers to financially diversify following Brexit. Author: Saffron Johnson,
The full report is available on the Ecotricity website HERE
Igas given go-ahead to drill in Nottinghamshire
The Planning and Licensing Committee gave the go-ahead subject to 37 planning conditions and imposed a legal agreement on the developer. The application concerned two wells at a site off Springs Road close to the village of Mission. It was submitted by IGas last October and did not cover the use of hydraulic fracturing.
The decision was originally scheduled to be made at the beginning of October. However, it was delayed after Friends of the Earth submitted a letter to the committee warning it against “granting planning permission to IGas to commit unlawful acts”. The campaign group has been acting on behalf of Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust which owns the nearby Mission Training Area. The former military bombing range has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest, in particular because of the birdlife. The letter drew attention to a “restrictive” legal covenant from 1969 which prevents the carrying out of any “noisy, noxious, or offensive trade” which could cause “nuisance, damage or annoyance” to the occupier of the site. The decision on IGas’s application was delayed whilst Nottinghamshire’s Planning and Licensing Committee sought legal advice. Today’s (15 November) decision was welcomed by the chief executive of UK Onshore Oil and Gas, Ken Cronin, who said: “This follows the successful applications for onshore oil and gas developments in North Yorkshire and Lancashire and shows positive momentum towards finding out what natural gas resources we have beneath our feet that can be developed for the good of the whole of the UK. “84 per cent of our homes use gas for heating and by 2035 four fifths of that gas will come from outside the UK – that is why this is important”.
Third Energy was granted permission to hydraulically fracture an existing well near the village of Kirby Misperton in North Yorkshire in May.
In October, the government overruled a local council to give the go-ahead to Cuadrilla to drill and fracture four exploratory wells at a site on Preston New Road in Lancashire. A decision on an application to drill a further four wells at Cuadrilla’s Roseacre Wood site in the county was deferred by communities secretary Sajid Javid.
Author: Tom Grimwood, (Utility Week)
Call for fair subsidy for solar development
Quarterly deployment of solar power is at its lowest for six years and the Solar Trade Association (STA) has called for “modest government intervention is needed to enable large-scale solar to access the UK market again”.
The dropped deployment and difficulty financing projects comes after cuts to support for large-scale solar including the closure of the Renewables Obligation (RO) in April last year.
A detailed new analysis from the STA argues that since most support for large-scale solar has been removed in the last year, a new auction round is needed for the cheapest renewables to compete on a level playing field for Contracts for Difference (CfD).
The STA has also urged government to reform Feed-in-Tariffs to boost solar deployment on large commercial rooftops which would cost “£6 million this parliament”. The industry is also asking for fair tax treatment for rooftop solar which combined with CfDs, could “get the solar industry back on track to zero subsidy by 2020”, according to the STA.
STA policy manager and report author David Pickup said: “The UK solar industry has been challenged to deliver subsidy free solar but, as our detailed analysis shows, this is not yet possible for mainstream projects. Even terrific financial innovation cannot get around hard economics; large-scale solar still needs just a little support from Government to provide consumers with one of the cheapest sources of clean power.
“The industry cannot invest for cost reductions tomorrow without decent market volumes today: a vicious circle. With only a third of the costs coming from panels, local supply chains and skills are vital for bringing costs down further to benefit consumers. The danger is that we risk losing these skills, financial confidence and supply chains that enable us to deliver the cheapest solar power.”
The analysis is part of an EU-wide financing project which examines how the solar market could adapt to a low-subsidy world and shows the costly escalating risk perception amongst investors as a result of reducing support schemes and Brexit.
STA chief executive Paul Barwell said: “Solar beautifully answers the energy trilemma of tackling climate change, security and affordability, but it is being cut out of the market and prevented from competing on a level playing field with other technologies.
“It doesn’t help consumers to inhibit the cheapest source of clean power in the UK and the competitive pressure it can provide right across the power sector. We hope new ministers will act quickly to open the UK market up again to the cheapest applications of solar power.” (Utility Week)