SSE Renewables says the Scottish Government has granted consent for its proposed Coire Glas venture, the UK’s largest newly deliberate hydro pumped storage scheme.

SSE Renewables says this choice marks one other step towards serving to Scotland and the UK ship their web zero ambitions.

If commercially authorized, Coire Glas may double the UK’s pumped storage quantity capability and supply the nationwide grid with the low-carbon balancing flexibility wanted to cut back power prices to shoppers whereas serving to decarbonise the ability system, in accordance with a press launch. The venture’s future industrial improvement is topic to figuring out the correct market funding framework.

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The Coire Glas venture, situated close to Loch Lochy in Lochaber within the Scottish Highlands, can be the UK’s first new pumped storage scheme in over 30 years. 

Initially authorized for a 600MW scheme in December 2013, revised plans have been submitted in April 2018 to the Scottish Government for an up-to-1500MW scheme. The modifications have been designed to maximise the potential of the location and assist the UK in its transition to a web zero power system by 2050.

The newly-approved scheme can be able to producing energy for 24 hours continuous and would have a pumped storage capability of as much as 30 GWh, SSE Renewables mentioned.

One of probably the most versatile storage applied sciences, pumped hydro gives a number of advantages and is probably the most confirmed large-scale, long-duration storage possibility out there. It can retailer surplus renewable electrical energy at instances of low demand and supply this energy again to the grid over a number of days.

For instance, the output from Coire Glas may energy round three million houses for as much as 24 hours. This makes it an necessary device to combine the extra wind and solar energy that can be constructed over the approaching a long time to assist obtain the UK’s web zero targets.

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Additionally, pumped storage may also help relieve transmission bottlenecks and supply a variety of grid companies to the Electricity System Operator, resembling restarting the system within the occasion of a black out. These “black begin” capabilities assist present the pliability wanted to decrease the price of balancing the nationwide grid and thereby decrease prices to shoppers.

“We’re more than happy with the choice by the Scottish Government to consent the revised Coire Glas venture, recognising the long-established and confirmed advantages pumped storage can deliver to the UK’s power system on the journey to web zero,” mentioned Paul Cooley, SSE Renewables’ director of capital tasks. “There are nonetheless industrial hurdles to beat for brand new pumped storage as to the place it suits throughout the present market framework, and we’re actively exploring potential options. In the meantime, Coire Glas stays an necessary improvement possibility for SSE Renewables and receiving consent is a big step ahead for the venture.”

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