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REA Resource groups

The REA deals with broad renewables policies, but also covers sector-specific issues. We have set up a number of what we call ‘Resource Groups’, some looking at individual technologies, others focussed on sub-sectors of the industry. The REA retains a number of specialist advisors with industrial expertise in individual sectors, to support the activities of the Resource Groups and policy development in general.

The Association and the Resource Groups work in collaboration with other trade associations and NGOs.

Please find below a complete list of the REA Resource Groups along with a brief description of their purpose.

Primary Biomass Group

Chairman & REA board member= Graham Stowell of Bronzeoak.

This group primarily covers:

  • Electricity, heat and CHP production from biomass and wastes that are exempted from the Waste Incineration Directive
  • Energy crops and fuel supply chain issues
  • Processed solid biofuels, e.g. wood pellets, chips etc, and
  • Small scale and domestic biomass installations.
The group works on supply side issues from the growing, collecting and processing of fuels, through to end-use applications, including domestic and industrial heat production, electricity generation and combined heat and power. Biomass can be utilised in both dedicated plant, and plants which co-fire biomass with other fuels.

The Biomass group was strengthened with the merger with the British Pellet Club in mid 2006.

Bio-energy Group

Chairman: Dick Turner of Viridor Waste Management
Board Member: Andrew MacLellan of ENER-G .

The Bio-energy Resource group covers:

  • Landfill gas
  • Sewage gas
  • Anaerobic digestion, and
  • Thermal energy recovery techniques from fuels covered by the Waste Incineration Directive.
Although biogas applications and thermal waste techniques are distinctly different technologies, there are many synergies. The input fuels typically arise from waste management activities so operations are covered by the Waste Framework Directive and PPC legislation.

Less biodegradable material will be landfilled as a result of the Landfill Directive. Therefore landfill gas, currently the major source of renewable electricity, will slowly reduce in output. Other waste management options will play a greater role. Many companies are active across the whole spectrum of energy recovery options from waste and there are many overlaps of technology. For example reciprocating and other internal combustion engines are commonly used in biogas fuelled power generation and such technology may be readily utilised in energy recovery from other waste derived gases or indeed liquid biofuels such as tallow.

Solar Group

Chairman & REA board member: Jeremy Leggett of solarcentury.

The Solar Resource group covers photovoltaics and solar thermal energy.

Because of the national focus on micro-generation, we also provide the REA’s primary presence in this sector and therefore:

  • The positive planning agenda
  • The development of industry self-regulation scheme for codes of practice for marketing
  • Accreditation of installers and certification of micro-generation products
  • The Government’s Micro-generation Strategy and related programmes
  • Building regulations
  • Domestic-scale biomass
  • Heat-pumps
  • Micro-wind and domestic CHP
  • Metering and distributed generation issues.
The primary focus of the solar group is PV and solar thermal, but many of the policy issues are generic to other micro-generation technologies (not all of which, strictly speaking, are renewable).

The British Photovoltaic Association (PV UK) merged with the REA in spring 2006, providing greater influence and numbers to the Solar Group.

Ocean Energy Group

Chairman & REA board member: Martin Wright of Marine Current Turbines Ltd.

The Ocean Energy Resource group covers:

  • Wave energy
  • Tidal energy
The primary focus of the Ocean Energy Group is the progress of energy conversion device development to prove the capability and survivability of full-scale prototypes, and the transitional measures required to finance projects and bring them to commercial fruition. Legal and consenting issues, the Marine Spatial Strategy and the Marine Bill are also areas of interest.

Renewable Transport Fuels Group

Chairman and Board Member: Doug Ward CBE of Argent Energy

The RTFG held its inaugural meeting in September 2005. The number of companies in membership expanded dramatically in the months leading up to the formation of the RTFG, with the mergers of British Biogen and the British Association of Bio-fuels and Oils. The Renewable Transport Fuels Group covers:

  • Biomass-derived fuels
  • Bioethanol
  • Biodiesel, and
  • Biogas.
The focus of the RTFG is to facilitate the introduction of an effective Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation including input into the proposed environmental assurance scheme and RTFO design. The Association’s unrivalled knowledge of the Renewable (Electricity) Obligation will form an excellent basis for this work. Other issues include longevity and rationalisation of fuel duty rebates, Enhanced Capital Allowances, standards and the trading of biofuels, market development and promotion.

Renewable Power Markets Group

Chairman & REA board member: Sue Wheeler of Centrica

Along with the Generator Group, the RPMG does not serve a particular technology or renewable resource, but cuts across all technologies. This group mainly comprises companies with an interest in the traded market for ROCs (Renewable Obligation Certificates), or other market based mechanisms used to promote renewables, such as the Energy Efficiency Commitment, which is becoming increasingly relevant to domestic-scale renewables.

Generator Group

Chairman & REA board member: Mark Candlish of Slough Heat & Power Ltd.

The generator group is one of the REA’s cross-cutting groupings. It covers generic issues relating to project development and electricity generation.

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