Onshore, Project Development, Wind Power

Wind Power Blowing Strong in Brighton

The “most successful renewables conference in the most successful year for wind power” was the take-home message from the British Wind Energy Association’s 24th annual conference and exhibition held in Brighton last week…

Brighton, England – October 10, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] The “most successful renewables conference in the most successful year for wind power” was the take-home message from the British Wind Energy Association’s 24th annual conference and exhibition held in Brighton last week. Around 500 leading players in the UK wind sector gathered in one place to hear expert speakers from government, key stakeholders and industry give the latest perspectives on the wind business in the United Kingdom. Topics included wind energy and aviation, (highlighted by the launch of the Aviation Working Guidelines); early indications of the process for ‘Future Offshore’ developments; the implications of the grid in future development, and new sessions on futures, derivatives, trading and insurance, as well as the traditional state-of-the art progress reports and territorial updates. This year also featured the launch of UKWED, the definitive database of wind energy and a key tool in statistical analyses, for example illustrating the contrast between local planning approaches to onshore wind in Wales and Scotland, with respective approval rates of just 12.6 percent compared with 93 percent. Delegates were encouraged by Energy Minister Brian Wilson, who joined them via a live video-link from the Labour Party Conference in Blackpool. The Minister announced the award of capital grants worth £10 million (US$15.5 million) each to the two consented offshore projects, Scroby Sands and North Hoyle, respectively off the coasts of Norfolk and Wales. Wilson also welcomed the publication of the interim aviation guidelines and assured delegates that resolution of this issue was high on his agenda. Other guest speakers included newly-appointed Chief Executive of the European Wind Energy Association, Corin Millais, who reflected on the early beginnings of the EWEA, (which followed a BWEA conference, also held in Brighton, over 20 years ago), and signaled how he would like the sister organizations to work closely in future, to further spread the wind energy message. Traditional industry awards made during BWEA24 included the peer-recognition Developer’s Developer Award, won this year by Gerry Jewson of RDC for bringing through the first wind section 36 approval, applicable to plant over 50 MW capacity, while a special lifetime achievement award went to Dr Peter Musgrove of National Wind Power, one of the ‘founding fathers’ of the industry. BWEA24 featured two new conference events, ‘Wind 101,’ a popularly-requested introduction to the technology and the first ever BWEA regatta, with twelve crews competing to prove how committed the industry is to fully harnessing the power of the wind Access: