Innovative use of wind power

Ian Johnston writes in The Independent about how streetlights may be fitted with small wind turbines in Britain. Do you know of other such innovative uses of renewable energy technologies?


Renewable energy companies are fitting wind turbines to lampposts to make electricity

Millions of lampposts could be fitted with wind turbines connected directly into the National Grid.

IT and technology firm NVT Group and Own Energy, which designed the small turbine that will be used, have formed a joint partnership that will create 25 jobs over the next year. However, the firms expected the number of people employed will rise to 300 within three years and say the venture could turnover more than £400m within five years.

Own Energy is to move from its offices in Glasgow to NVT Group’s headquarters in Bellshill, Lanarkshire, as a result of the deal.

David Gordon, Own Energy’s chief executive, said he believed the new business was “likely to scale up quickly”.

“There are around 10 million lampposts in the UK and upwards of 20 per cent of these are suitable for conversion, which makes this a very scalable business opportunity with huge export potential,” he said.

“We have already had positive preliminary discussions with UK public and private bodies and have had indications of interest from the US, Canada, Mexico, Ireland and South Africa.

“We believe this business has the potential to achieve an annual UK turnover of over £400m within five years.”

Local politicians hailed the new business. Scottish Nationalist MSP Richard Lyle said: “This is marvellous news and I know from colleagues across the political divide that this project is really firing the imagination. It chimes with the policies of the major political parties in Scotland and can deliver both clean green energy as well as meaningful financial benefits for hosts such as local government and private owners alike.

“Bringing jobs to Bellshill is also to be welcomed. I wish both NVT and Own Energy well in this exciting new energy project.”

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