Canopy Power develops renewable microgrids in Asia with EDF
Described by Canopy as “cleaner and cheaper electricity where the grid won’t reach”, its microgrids can significantly reduce the consumption of diesel fuel by mitigating the necessity of generator engines and thus also preventing the fluxations in oil price having a bearing on a business’ profitability.
It does this by pooling several sources of cleaner energy, such as solar and wind, in combination with pre-existing generator and electricity grid infrastructure. The combined energy is linked at a central management point.
As is common with microgrids and virtual power plants, battery storage units are used to regulate excess energy by storing it for peak usage hours or nighttime.
The overall affordability and cost-saving aspects of the microgrid are monitored by a smart energy management system, which also ensures that customers receive a consistent level of quality and service.
Opening up new opportunities in Asia
The deal struck between Canopy and EDF is a jointly-devised market offering which hopes to develop new energy-related business opportunities in Asia.
As a domestic expert in designing functional microgrids, Canopy will provide project development and long-term engineering services.
Meanwhile, EDF, also an expert in the field of renewable energy, will provide resources for the project, as well as its experience from similar endeavours and renowned capability for high-quality delivery.
“EDF exports its expertise around the world with a strong ambition: to support its customers all over the world with their energy transition,” said Jean-Philippe Buisson, Snr VP Asia at EDF in an article by PV Magazine Australia.
“This partnership with Canopy Power supports our commitments in Asia to develop solar hybrid microgrids, with the objective to decarbonise the electricity mix some of our customers are using, or give populations which do not have decent electricity supply access to clean electricity.
“Combining EDF’s strengths with Canopy Power’s will accelerate the pace of the projects implemented in Asia.”
Similarly, Sujay Malve, Founder and CEO of Canopy Power, added in the same article that the two companies shared a common sense of purpose: providing power to those who need it via eco-friendly methods. He believed this unity would lead the endeavour to success.
“While EDF brings decades of experience in owning and operating energy infrastructure, Canopy Power provides the regional and technical expertise of designing and building renewable microgrids. Together we offer cost-effective, modular energy solutions to businesses and communities striving to make the shift in the right direction,” he said.
Major move forward for UK’s nascent marine energy sector
Although the industry is small and the technologies are limited, marine-based energy systems look to be taking off as “the world’s most powerful tidal turbine” begins grid-connected power generation at the European Marine Energy Centre.
At around 74 metres long, the turbine single-handedly holds the potential to supply the annual electricity demand to approximately 2,000 homes within the UK and offset 2,200 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Orbital Marine Power, a privately held Scottish-based company, announced the turbine is set to operate for around 15 years in the waters surrounding Orkney, Scotland, where the 2-megawatt O2 turbine weighing around 680 metric tons will be linked to a local on-land electricity network via a subsea cable.
How optimistic is the outlook for the UK’s turbine bid?
Described as a “major milestone for O2” by CEO of Orbital Marine Power Andrew Scott, the turbine will also supply additional power to generate ‘green hydrogen’ through the use of a land-based electrolyser in the hopes it will demonstrate the “decarbonisation of wider energy requirements.”
“Our vision is that this project is the trigger to the harnessing of tidal stream resources around the world to play a role in tackling climate change whilst creating a new, low-carbon industrial sector,” says Scott in a statement.
The Scottish Government has awarded £3.4 million through the Saltire Tidal Energy Challenge Fund to support the project’s construction, while public lenders also contributed to the financial requirements of the tidal turbine through the ethical investment platform Abundance Investment.
“The deployment of Orbital Marine Power’s O2, the world’s most powerful tidal turbine, is a proud moment for Scotland and a significant milestone in our journey to net zero,” says Michael Matheson, the Cabinet Secretary for Net-Zero, Energy and Transport for the Scottish Government.
“With our abundant natural resources, expertise and ambition, Scotland is ideally placed to harness the enormous global market for marine energy whilst helping deliver a net-zero economy.
“That’s why the Scottish Government has consistently supported the marine energy sector for over 10 years.”
However, Orbital Marine CEO Scott believes there’s potential to commercialise the technology being used in the project with the prospect of working towards more efficient and advanced marine energy projects in the future.
“We believe pioneering our vision in the UK can deliver on a broad spectrum of political initiatives across net-zero, levelling up and building back better at the same time as demonstrating global leadership in the area of low carbon innovation that is essential to creating a more sustainable future for the generations to come.”
The UK’s growing marine energy endeavours
This latest tidal turbine project isn’t a first for marine energy in the UK. The Port of London Authority permitted the River Thames to become a temporary home for trials into tidal energy technology and, more recently, a research project spanning the course of a year is set to focus on the potential tidal, wave, and floating wind technology holds for the future efficiency of renewable energy. The research is due to take place off of the Southwest coast of England on the Isles of Scilly