18 May 2010 13:43
E.ON makes waves in UK waters
E.ON, one of the UK's leading renewable energy companies, has today formally unveiled its first wave power generator in the UK.
Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond officially launched and named the Vagr Atferd (Norse for wave power) P2 wave energy converter. The machine, designed and constructed by Pelamis, is capable of generating 750kW of renewable energy and will be installed and tested at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney.
At the launch ceremony at Leith Port in Edinburgh, Dr Paul Golby, Chief Executive of E.ON UK, said: "We're delighted to be a part of such an innovative project. The event marks a milestone in marine technology and the next exciting step for renewable energy in the UK.
"It's essential that we continue to invest in new technologies, like the Vagr Atferd, to harness the power of nature and to accelerate our transition to a low carbon economy.
"Today's launch is a celebration of the successes we've seen with renewables and a clear example of the changing shape of the UK energy industry - there is a real potential for the UK to lead the marine energy sector."
The installation of the Pelamis wave energy converter at EMEC will be the first time that the P2 machine has been tested anywhere in the world and also represents the UK's first commercial supply contract within the marine energy sector.
Rt Hon Alex Salmond, the First Minister of Scotland, said: "Scotland is well-placed to become the clean, green energy powerhouse of Europe, with as much as 10 per cent of its wave power potential, as well as an estimated one quarter of the continent's offshore wind and tidal energy capacity."
"Today is another significant step in that journey. It is also testament to E.ON's strong global commitment to renewable energy generation and to the ambition and innovation of Pelamis in pioneering its internationally-renowned wave energy technology.
"I'm delighted that the completed P2 wave energy converter is now ready for deployment at the European Marine Energy Centre and pleased to officially name the device Vagr Atferd."
Tom Delay, chief executive of the Carbon Trust, which awarded Pelamis funding from the Marine Renewables Proving Fund to develop and test the P2 device, said:
"This is another important landmark which shows the UK's marine energy industry is rapidly coming of age. We have a clear lead in this sector and must now capitalise on this to secure maximum benefit in creating new jobs and revenue for the UK. Having supported Pelamis with funding from the Marine Renwables Proving Fund, we look forward to continuing to work with them and E.ON testing the device and bringing it a step closer to commercial deployment."
The device is 180m long - or as long as the Gherkin building in London is tall - and weighs approximately 1,500 tonnes.
The machine was named by Matthew Rendall of Stromness Primary School in Orkney, following a competition. Matthew and his family joined the First Minister at the port where he officially launched and named the device.
E.ON currently owns and operates 21 wind farms from Cornwall to Kintyre, including Robin Rigg in the Solway Firth, which is one of the UK's largest offshore wind farms. E.ON is also a partner in the London Array, which will be the world's largest offshore wind farm when complete, together with DONG Energy and Masdar.
Notes to editors
- E.ON is one of the UK's leading power and gas companies - generating and distributing electricity, and retailing power and gas - and is part of the E.ON group, one of the world's largest investor-owned power and gas companies. We employ around 16,000 people in the UK and more than 88,000 worldwide;
- We're one of the leading green generators in the UK, with 21 wind farms located from Cornwall to Kintyre. We own and operate one of the UK's largest dedicated biomass power stations at Lockerbie. Combined, our renewable portfolio generates enough green energy to power the homes in a city the size of Manchester;
- Our green development portfolio could power over a million homes and displace the emission of almost two million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year by building new onshore and offshore wind farms, biomass power stations, and tidal stream and wave power schemes;
- Our target is to cut the carbon released by each kW of electricity we generate by 10% between 2005-2012, having already reduced it by 20% since 1990;
- We have 1,500MW of renewable capacity under development;
- We are investing £50 million in new technologies and approaches over 10 years, through the Energy Technologies Institute;
- We have Biodiversity Action Plans at many of our sites which align us with the UK target of significantly reducing biodiversity loss;
- E.ON Group has announced it intends to reduced the carbon intensity of its generation by 50% by 2030 (on 1990 levels);
- E.ON Group aims to spend €8bn between 2007 and 2011 on renewable generation and climate protection activities.
- In February, Carbon Trust awarded funding from the Marine Renewables Proving Fund (MRPF) to the six most promising marine energy technologies to speed up the deployment of full scale prototypes. The funding provided to Pelamis has supported the design and construction of the P2 device and will also enable installation and testing at the European Marine Energy Centre.
For more information contact:
E.ON press contact Rebecca Mara on 02476 183 679
Carbon Trust press office on 0207 544 3100.
Select E.ON UK images, are available free of charge to the media by registering at http://www.newscast.co.uk/
An animation of the Pelamis device is available on the eon-uk.com website Media section