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Scotland opens European Green Energy Centre

aberdeenThe Scottish European Green Energy Centre (SEGEC) has opened at the University of Aberdeen.

The centre is funded by a £1.6 million investment from the European Regional Development Fund, as well as more than £1 million from the Scottish Government over the next three years.

At the official opening of the centre, First Minister Alex Salmond said it would strengthen Scotland’s position as a leader in sustainable energy demonstration and deployment.

SEGEC will focus on marine energy, offshore wind, long-distance super-grid development and smart distribution grids, carbon capture and storage, renewable heat and energy efficiency.

It aims to help the Scottish green-energy sector secure maximum benefits from engagement with Europe through developing partnerships with businesses and institutions, designing collaborative projects and identifying and accessing European funding.

SEGEC has been established as a company limited by guarantee. Head of ITI Energy, Duncan Botting, was recently named the Executive Chair of the Centre while the body is being established and other board members are drawn from research partners, the energy industry and government bodies.

“The Scottish European Green Energy Centre aims to build on Aberdeen’s long-established global reputation as an energy hub by positioning Scotland at the forefront of European innovation, research and development in clean, renewable energy,” Salmond said. “The £1.6 million investment of European funding will, through SEGEC, embrace the energy-related opportunities presented through Scotland’s leading global effort to reduce climate change. Scotland’s natural capital can create tens of thousands of green jobs.”

He added, “We must capitalise on Scotland’s natural competitive advantages in clean, green energy to secure and grow the energy industry’s presence in Scotland. The Scottish Government is commited to harnessing Scotland’s potential and SEGEC has already played a leading role in putting forward major bids for EU support for projects including major sub sea-grids and carbon transport.”

Salmond continued, “The official opening of SEGEC is an important step forward in building Scotland’s growing reputation as the green global powerhouse of Europe. It will help Scotland secure a more influential role in the development of green energy and how this country can play its role in support of ambitious, EU wide targets.”

“We welcome the First Minister’s announcement today and we have already started work by identifying and facilitating no less than three key European Recovery Fund projects that were delivered to the European Commission in mid-July,” added Botting. “The partners involved with this process have commended SEGEC for the high degree of quality and excellence in service that we have been able to offer. Looking forward, there is a terrific opportunity to deliver real-world demonstration and deployment projects of scale for Scotland to benefit our green-energy ambitions.”

“The Scottish European Green Energy Centre is another important step in the realisation of Scotland’s renewable energy ambitions, which SSE is pleased to support,” said Ian Marchant, Chief Executive of Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE). “The key is developing and deploying the technologies that can harness Scotland’s remarkable green-energy resources, and this new Centre will provide a key means of doing this, involving industry, government and universities here and elsewhere in Europe. It is the kind of initiative that has to be taken and has to succeed if challenging targets for renewable energy in 2020 and beyond are to be met.”

“We are pleased to be supporting The Scottish European Green Energy Centre, which has an important role to play in further establishing relationships across Europe that will benefit green technology and future developments in Scotland,” added Gordon McGregor, energy and environment director at ScottishPower. “Scotland has some of the best natural resources in the world for developing low-carbon technology, and groundbreaking projects have already been implemented here. This year ScottishPower Renewables completed Europe’s largest onshore windfarm at Whitelee near Glasgow and Longannet power station in Fife started a project to test carbon capture technology — a UK first. This initiative will help to ensure that Scotland can build on its strong position with further benefits for our environment, and our economy.”

“We are delighted that SEGEC has now been officially launched,” said Alex Paterson, Highlands and Islands Enterprise’s director of regional competitiveness. “Without doubt it will ensure Scotland maximises the opportunities afforded by the considerable financial support available through the European Union for clean energy and will support Scotland achieve its targets for increased deployment and use of renewable energy.”

“The University of Aberdeen is delighted to be a founding member of the Scottish European Green Energy Centre and to host the facility on our King’s College Campus,” added Stephen Logan, senior vice principal of University of Aberdeen. “An investment of £0.5 million has been made by the university into facilities for the co-location of SEGEC, and the National Subsea Research Institute (NSRI). We anticipate natural interaction between these two key centres and look forward to facilitating the research conducted, which will drive forward the European renewable energy agenda.”

“Scotland’s universities are leading the way in world-class research and development on the low-carbon energy supplies and infrastructure of the future,” said Jim McDonald, chair of the Energy Technology Partnership. “Scotland’s top energy researchers are already collaborating together through the Energy Technology Partnership (ETP) within Scotland and across the world. SEGEC will help ensure a dedicated focal point for research collaborations between Scotland and the EU, where there are significant funding opportunities and challenging targets to deliver a low-carbon economy.”

1 Comment

  • scottish power
    Posted October 22, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    This is great news for Aberdeen and for Scotland. This is one of a few exciting energy announcements (including CEERE in Glasgow as well) – im proud to see my country pioneering research in this vital area.

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