By Derek Skinner, Renewable Energy Director
For the first year since we set up the Bruce Stevenson Renewable Energy Team in 2007 we have not been involved in a multitude of construction projects. On-Shore Wind, Hydro, Solar and Biogas subsidy reductions and removal have effectively closed the sector to new projects. We are working with developers on potential subsidy free projects, but these are few and far between and it may require a political change of direction to reenergise the industry.
The renewable energy sector in the UK has, however, continued to produce more output and electricity to our homes and businesses. Sunshine and drought may not have helped the wind and hydro sites during the summer months, but clearly the solar industry benefited. It was not long into Autumn before that was all to change with stormy weather arriving.
Interestingly, it was a year of growth for our team with several London funds switching their portfolios of operational assets to Bruce Stevenson for insurance advice and cover. We are engrained in the renewable sector and worked with Insurers to produce a package that works hard to protect these investments.
We also extended our cover portfolio to include Capacity/Peak Power projects. Our experience of project finance arrangements proved valuable when engaging in contract discussions. Over 450MW were insured through us in 2018.
And there have been insurance claims. Solar has been a challenge for insurers with numerous theft incidents throughout the UK. This, along with faulty transformers causing downtime, has led to insurers reviewing their premiums and security requirements. We will keep an eye on this and continue to engage with all parties.
So, Bruce Stevenson goes into 2019 prepared for whatever the sector brings.
Whether that is Battery and Hydrogen Storage, Subsidy Free Wind, Acquisitions or to protect our clients against any contractual or legal challenges. We increased our team numbers and expertise in 2018 and fully expect we will need to draw upon this extra capacity and knowledge in 2019.
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