RenewableUK 2013, the 35th annual conference and exhibition for the renewable sector, took place between 5th & 7th November 2013. The three-day event, which was housed at Birmingham’s NEC, has once again proved to be a huge success within the industry.
RewablesUK is widely recognised as the renewable event to attend in the UK, with more than 4,500 delegates, 250 exhibitors and 190 speakers in attendance. Across the three days, numerous discussions, seminars and exhibitions took place, keeping all attendees updated on the latest developments.
Maria McCaffery, the Chief Executive of RenewableUK, officially opened this year’s event, welcoming visitors and delegates alike, whilst Rt Hon Edward Davey MP, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change addressed over 600 delegates.
Mr Davey described the renewable energy sector as “crucial to green growth and energy security”, and announced the news that four offshore wind projects will receive a share of £2.5 million of investment. Ricardo UK Ltd was awarded £634,980; TetraFloat Ltd will receive £134,000; Blade Dynamics Ltd will be awarded £842,630; and SSE Renewables UK Ltd will be given a £1 million grant.
The MP also spoke about the wave and tidal sector, noting “marine energy has great potential.”
Rt Hon Edward Davey MP, said:
“Investment in innovation now will improve the affordability of the technologies we deploy in the future; reduce bills for households and businesses; and strengthen energy security.”
Chairman of RenewableUK, Andrew Jamieson, opened the second day of the event and welcomed Julie Elliot MP, the Shadow Minister for Energy and Climate Change. Julie highlighted the need to “look at areas that could become hubs for new green industries.”
“There are areas in the country, many of them old manufacturing centres like Yorkshire and Humberside or the North East, which possess exciting infrastructure and skills that can be adapted to support low carbon technologies.
“We need to develop a manufacturing base which would allow us not only to become a leader in offshore wind, but would give us a fantastic market.”
2013 has been a significant year for the renewable sector, with the offshore wind industry breaking records in terms of new deployment. During the second day of the event, RenewableUK’s published its annual report which highlighted a 79% growth capacity for offshore wind within a 12 month period, with a 40% increase in the amount of onshore and offshore wind installed. In addition, the report recognised that for the first time, more wind farms have been built offshore than onshore over the last year, with offshore projects increasing in size.
RenewableUK’s Chief Executive, Maria McCaffery, said:
“We’ve smashed another record in the past year with more offshore wind installed than ever before – the 79% increase in capacity within 12 months is a terrific achievement. With onshore expanding by 25%, the wind industry as a whole has proved that it has the tenacity to achieve substantial growth.
“It’s tangible proof of the dedication of thousands of Britons who are working tirelessly to generate electricity from a clean, home-grown source at a cost that we can control, increasing the UK’s energy security.
“Tens of thousands more will be joining the industry over the rest of this decade as we build out the rest of the projects in the pipeline – as long as Government policy is supportive and provides the right framework for one of this country’s greatest modern industrial and environmental success stories to reach its full potential.”
The final day of the event included an Aviation Stream, an Electricity Networks & Systems Operation Stream and a careers fair.
Sponsors of RenewableUK were ABB Ltd, Welsh Government, RES, KONA (formerly lynx metmAsts), UK Trade & Investment, Civil Aviation Authority, GE Power & Water Renewable Energy, GL Garrad Hassan and Vergnet.
RenewableUK 2014, the 36th annual conference and exhibition, will take place in Manchester between 11th and 13th November 2014. The three-day event will be held in the city’s Manchester Central, with stand packages available now on a first-come-first-served basis.
For more information about RenewableUK 2014, please visit: www.renewableuk.com.