Wind powers water treatment works in North Cornwall
Wind power is being harnessed in Cornwall to help produce top-quality drinking water.
A new wind turbine has been installed at Lowermoor (Crowdy) Water Treatment Works, near Camelford, in North Cornwall.
The turbine is capable of generating around 60% of the site's annual power needs.
The 100kW turbine was shipped from the manufacturer in Vermont, USA, to North Cornwall. The turbine tower, blades and generator were assembled on site in four days by a team of five.
South West Water's Renewable Energy Manager, David Harpur, said: "This project is part of South West Water's drive to reduce our carbon footprint and help combat climate change.
"We have reviewed many of our sites to see which would be most suitable for small-scale wind turbines. Lowermoor was chosen for our first turbine because it gets plenty of wind and we are able to use the electricity produced on site. The works has plenty of space for the turbine and there are other turbines nearby so it fits in well with the local surroundings.
"South West Water already operates hydro-electric and biogas plants and this new wind turbine will help in our goal to further develop the company's renewable energy capability."
The wind turbine cost in the region of £400,000, funded by South West Water. The savings from the reduction in electricity purchased from the national grid will mean the turbine will 'pay back' in as little as five years. The turbine will have a lifetime of over 20 years.
Generating renewable energy for use on South West Water's operational sites improves operating efficiency and will have a positive impact on South West Water's customers' bills into the future.
Notes to editors
- The Government has placed an obligation on all water companies to reduce their carbon emissions. Like South West Water, most of the water companies are considering a range of renewable energy options including wind power
- South West Water selected the single 100kW wind turbine on the basis that all the electricity generated will be used locally on site. This will complement our core business activity of water treatment rather than being a commercial scale wind turbine used for energy export
- The turbine has a 30m hub height, with a rotor diameter of 21 metres and a rated capacity of around 100kW. It sits in a base made of 100 cubic metres of concrete
- It has been designed to shut down at low wind speeds at particular times of year to protect bats. The grass around the turbine will cut at particular times of year to protect birds and bats. The turbine is also designed to shut down at very high wind speeds to protect the turbine
- Lowermoor (Crowdy) water treatment works uses around 450 Megawatt (MWh) of electricity a year. The 100kw turbine should generate around 280MWh - approximately 60% of the site's power needs
- South West Water currently uses approximately 250 Gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity each year
- South West Water currently generates approximately 15GWh of renewable electricity each year
- We are working towards generating 30GWh per year by the end of 2015 and 50GWh by the end of 2020.
Published: 7 October 2011
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