The Anonymous Widower

Could A White LEVC TX Electric Taxi Be A 21st Century Wedding Car?

I took these pictures of a white LEVC TX electric taxi at St. Pancras station.

A few minutes later, I got into a more common black one and asked the driver.

He said, he was very pleased with his new vehicle and he suspected some had been used as wedding cars.

September 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | 2 Comments

Progress At Syon Lane Station – 18th September 2019

The builders are now digging on both platforms at Syon Lane station.

The posters at the station give the impression that brick towers might be built.

But it looks to my untrained eye, that the foundations being dug don’t appear to be deep enough.

Waiting at the station for my train, I wondered, if they are going to put a set of stairs and a life on both platforms to give step-free access to the existing road bridge.

  • The towers would be shorter and height costs money.
  • There would be no need to build and lift in an additional bridge, as pedestrians would use the existing pavement.
  • It might be possible to do all the work without closing the railway.
  • This would meet all the step-free regulations.

There certainly seems to be no work going on further down the platform, where it appeared some trees were cleared.

It’ll all come clear in a few weeks and I suspect it will meet the generally high standards of Network Rail.

 

September 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Climate change: Offshore Wind Expands At Record Low Price

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on BBC News.

These are the first paragraphs.

A record amount of new offshore wind power has been announced in the UK – at record low prices.

The new projects will power more than seven million homes for as little as £39.65 per megawatt hour.

Compare this price with the £92.50 per MWh for the nuclear Hinckley Point C.

Note that all prices are in 2012 prices.

I have no argument with the engineering of nuclear power stations, but they do have issues that must be addressed.

  • They shouldn’t be built in possible earthquake zones.
  • They have a very high cost.
  • They can be an eyesore in parts of the UK.

But they do provide a good power zero-carbon baseload, once they are constructed.

Dogger Bank Wind Farm

The Dogger Bank Wind Farm would appear to be the centrepiece of the energy developments South of the Scottish Border.

It will be three separate 1.2 gigawatt wind farms developed on the relatively shallow seas around the Dogger Bank.

  • Creyke Beck A
  • Creyke Beck B
  • Teesside A

Wikipedia says this about the first two wind farms.

They would connect to the existing Creyke Beck substation near Cottingham, in the East Riding of Yorkshire.[6] The two sites lie 131 kilometres (81 mi) from the East Yorkshire coast.

Both have an area of around two hundred square miles.

Teeside A is further North and would be connected to a substation near Redcar.

North Sea Wind Power Hub

The three fields I’ve listed are all in UK waters and according to Wikipedia will or could be joined by more wind farms in the same area.

But just across the maritime border between the United Kingdom and the European Union, Denmark, Germany and The Netherlands have plans to develop the North Sea Wind Power Hub.

Wikipedia introduces the project like this.

North Sea Wind Power Hub is a proposed energy island complex to be built in the middle of the North Sea as part of a European system for sustainable electricity. One or more “Power Link” artificial islands will be created at the northeast end of the Dogger Bank, a relatively shallow area in the North Sea, just outside the continental shelf of the United Kingdom and near the point where the borders between the territorial waters of Netherlands, Germany, and Denmark come together. Dutch, German, and Danish electrical grid operators are cooperating in this project to help develop a cluster of offshore wind parks with a capacity of several gigawatts, with interconnections to the North Sea countries. Undersea cables will make international trade in electricity possible.

These points are also made.

  • Six square mile islands will be built surrounded by thousands of wind turbines.
  • The Dutch have estimated that 110 gigawatts of wind power could be produced at the Dogger Bank location.
  • We are not a member of the consortium, but it is hoped that Norway, Belgium and the UK will join.
  • The Dutch have suggested converting some of the electricity produced to hydrogen.
  • Completion date is set for 2050.

I am excited by this project.

We may not be part of the North Sea Wind Power Hub consortium and in a month or so, we may or may not be part of the European Union, but today’s announcement of new wind power projects in our section of the Dogger Bank  is effectively a substantial marker, that compliments the European plan.

Consider.

  • We are putting 3.6 GW of wind turbines on the Dogger Bank.
  • We are connecting it to the UK electricity grid. at Creyke Beck.
  • It would be easy to create another bi-directional electricity interconnector between the UK’s planned and the EU’s possible wind farms.

This is the sort of project that works, whether Brexit happens or doesn’t!

Six Scottish Wind Farms

.There is also a second article on the BBC, which is entitled Six Scottish Wind Farms Awarded Contracts.

These are the first paragraphs.

Six Scottish wind farm projects are set to go ahead after being awarded UK government contracts to sell the electricity they would produce.

The schemes include Forthwind and SSE Renewables’ Seagreen Phase 1, which are both proposed for the Firth of Forth.

Four onshore wind farms – Muaitheabhal and Druim Leathann in Lewis and Hesta Head and Costa Head in Orkney – have also secured contracts.

All farms are expected to be built by 2025 and provide enough energy for 265,000 homes.

Price Summary For Offshore Wind

This page on Offshore Wind gives the strike prices for the six offshore wind farms.

Creyke Bank A – £39.65 per MWh – 1200 MW

Creyke Bank B – £41.61 per MWh – 1200 MW

Teeside A – £41.61 per MWh – 1200 MW

Teeside B (Sophia) – £41.65 per MWh – 1400 MW

Forthwind – £39.65 per MWh – 12 MW

Seagreen Phase 1 – £41.61 per MWh – 454 MW

The size of each farm is also given.

Conclusion

The lights will stay on and we will need to develop more energy storage.

September 20, 2019 Posted by | World | , , , , | 1 Comment

Amazon Will Order 100,000 Electric Vans To Hit Carbon-Neutral Pledge

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on The Times.

A few points from the article.

  • The vans will be from a start-up company called Rivian, in which Ford has invested half a billion dollars.
  • Delivery will be within five years.
  • Amazon aims to be carbon-neutral by 20140.
  • Some of the vans will be used in the UK.

Apparently, Jeff Bezos made the announcement close to the White House.

Hopefully, this excellent policy will cause a few ripples.

  • Will it encourage other van users to look at using electric vans?
  • Will it push other vehicle manufacturers to develop zero-carbon vans?
  • Will it help to reduce pollution in cities?

Because major companies are a bit like sheep, the announcement of Amazon and Rivian could start a major change.

Did We Lose The Plot On Electric Delivery Vehicles?

When I was growing up, milk was delivered daily in an electric milk float.

I am also old enough to remember the Harrods electric delivery vehicles, which were actually built by the store in the basement.

This article on LOCity gives a picture and a few details.

Amazon seem to be going back to the future!

Who will be next?

September 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

South Wales Metro: Lack Of Toilets Tram-Trains ‘Dehumanising’

The title of this post is the same as that on this article on the BBC.

This is the first two paragraphs.

he lack of toilets on new tram-trains that will serve the south Wales valleys has been branded “dehumanising”.

Trams proposed for the new £738m south Wales rail network upgrade, planned for 2022, will not have toilets on board.

This toilet issue was raised with Crossrail and I wrote about it in 2015, in Do Crossrail Trains Need Toilets?.

Now that the Crossrail trains have been running for some time, toilet issues don’t seem to be raised.

September 20, 2019 Posted by | Transport | , | 4 Comments