Progress for green energy as ScottishPower invests £20m in hydro-electric power

21 August 2008 / by Rachael Stiles
ScottishPower has committed £20million for a two year investment in hydro-electric power, marking a big step forward for greener energy.

The two year plan will see upgrades of ScottishPower's hydro-electric equipment at its three plans in Scotland, which will guarantee their efficient operation for at least another quarter of a centurty.

The three plants – at Cruachan, Galloway, and Lanark – have a combined output of 562MW, with production rates at Cruachan enjoying its best performance for a decade with production rates at a 10 year high thanks to the recent investment, a good sign for the green energy industry.

The money will be used to carry out a range of maintenance work at each of the three sites, some of which were originally designed in the 1920s and in need of upgrading, and ScottishPower hopes that its new investment will ensure the plants' continued high performance.

"In a climate of global volatility in the wholesale energy markets, hydro-electric plants are proving to be an extremely efficient method of generating electricity as input costs are relatively low." commented Frank Mitchell, generation director at ScottishPower.

Hydro power will continue to be an important aspect of the energy business, he said, as there are no signs that the global energy market is going to level off in the near future. which is reflected in the investment.

"Hydro is also very versatile and can be brought on-line quickly when required, so is an essential element in guaranteeing secure supplies of power across the entire network." Mr Mitchell continued.

"Our £20m investment will guarantee the longevity of all our hydro stations and keep performance levels high. When you consider that the Galloway and Lanark schemes were both first considered in the 1920’s, and Cruachan in the 1950’s, to say that they still play an essential role in the modern day electricity network is testament to their original quality design and on-going levels of committed stewardship."

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