University of Exeter helps Guernsey develop renewable energy strategy

May 1st, 2012 by States of Guernsey Commerce and Employment Department

Academics and students from the University of Exeter are coming to Guernsey on a field visit to make a high level strategic assessment of the renewable energy potential for Guernsey.

This initiative is part of Commerce and Employment’s Renewable Energy Team’s (RET) long term strategic alliance with leading UK Universities to progress local macro marine renewable energy.

Twenty-six undergraduate students studying for a BSc in Renewable Energy and four academics will visit the island at the end of May 2012 and form different groups to act as renewable energy consultants to study various aspects of Guernsey’s renewable potential.

Focus would be given to the strategic implementation of wind, wave and tidal energy to develop an energy management strategy for Guernsey. The work, using both existing and new data, will focus on the potential for development of offshore renewable energy in Guernsey’s water.

It will be assessed on:

  • Visual impact assessment of wind, tidal and/or wave devices
  • Resource assessment for offshore renewable energy deployments
  • Grid connection and power distribution
  • Infrastructure for offshore deployments and maintenance
  • Acceptability of renewable energy technologies by the Guernsey public is a key aspect of any successful implementation, so assessment must include: Development of public consultation procedures.

RET has the mandate for macro marine renewable energy, but it is important to understand this in the general context of renewables and therefore this study will go slightly wider and look at renewable energy in general.

Deputy Robert Sillars, Chairman of RET said “we are pleased to welcome academics and students from the University of Exeter to assist us in further understanding renewable energy within Guernsey. We have done a lot of work already but this field visit will form an overarching view on the island’s renewable future and use information from past and current projects.”

Dr Lars Johanning from University of Exeter said “we are delighted to be involved and to support Guernsey’s renewable energy aspirations. The field trip project involves strategic assessment of marine renewable opportunities and will be achieved by our senior Renewable Energy students. We hope that this is the beginning of a long term relationship between the University of Exeter and Guernsey’s Renewable Energy Team.”

The group will prepare a consultant’s report to a standard that is comparable with a professional submission and will deliver a presentation explaining project findings to an audience invited by RET at the end of May. There may also be potential to modify the presentation to make it in a more public forum later in 2012.

To maximise the benefit of the field visit RET and UoE have contacted various key stakeholders, groups and individuals to assist them in their work.

The intention is that a similar field visit could be repeated in future years so that as more information and data is gathered about the local marine resource the strategic assessment and conclusions are updated.


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