This page provides information on the 2020-2050 Energy Policy, renewable energy and security of fuel supply.
Energy Policy: Managing the Energy Transition
The Energy Policy 2020 - 2050 provides direction to the energy market for long-term planning and investment, to manage the transition to decarbonisation and increased electrification for consumers. This will ensure that Guernsey keeps up to date with global decarbonisation trends, regulations, technologies, industry practises and innovation. The Energy Policy can be read in full, or there is a quick summary of the Energy Policy, in the downloads section.
The Energy Policy established that by 2050 at the latest, the vast majority of Guernsey's energy supplies will come from clean, low carbon sources and residual emissions will be offset. In order to implement the vision for Guernsey's future energy, there are six policy objectives:
- Decarbonisation - Decarbonisation of the Island's energy system will be in line with developing and evolving international standards and those set by other jurisdictions to mitigate climate change. This means our aim must be to have an energy system in which our energy supplies come from clean, low carbon sources. The outcome of this will be clean air and a healthy environment in which our community lives.
- Security and resilience of supply - Maintaining the required level of security of supply to withstand simultaneous infrastructure failures within the system and still serve our energy needs. Working on the basis of increased interconnection; the existing N-2 criteria (on-island generation provision) would be updated, as appropriate, to maintain security of supply levels in light of increased connectivity.
- Consumer value and choice - An approach to competition in the energy market that is aligned with Guernsey's scale and size, and one where consumers can have a choice over their primary source of energy.
- Equity and fairness - An energy market where all consumers pay a share of the maintenance of the system, and in return receive equal access to the opportunities that come from technological advances.
- Supporting a vibrant economy - A clean, reliable, and affordable energy supply is a fundamental economic enabler. Establishing an environment for the development of on-island (including offshore) renewables will support the diversification and vibrancy of Guernsey's economy. A shift to decarbonisation in Guernsey will be an essential reputational advantage to support the growth of the green finance sector. Establishing a clean and secure energy supply is a significant component of decarbonisation and assists in delivering the credibility and reputation that underpin growth in green finance.
- Greater energy independence - A system where a greater and significant proportion of our community's energy needs are supplied through local energy sources. This will increase resilience by reducing exposure to external and geopolitical factors.
The policy objectives will be weighted and prioritised in the development of the Electricity Strategy.
- The States of Guernsey and Guernsey Electricity Ltd commissioned a report on future energy demand in order to better understand the future energy mix on a local scale. The Energy Demand Forecast Report and Energy Infrastructure Options report are available in the downloads section. A summary of policy options has also been produced, based on the future energy demand forecast, on energy efficiency and decarbonisation. Commercially sensitive information has been redacted.
- Through the Energy Policy, the Committee for the Environment & Infrastructure was directed to develop an updated Electricity Strategy for Guernsey. The aim of the Strategy is to answer the questions of:
- Where are we today and where do we want to get to?
- What do we want/need to meet the objectives of the energy policy?
- How do we deliver on those needs?
- The Electricity Strategy will include the review of options for security of supply, which is currently requiring Guernsey Electricity to maintain sufficient plant to cover peak demand should the largest two generators be unavailable. The Strategy will also review the structure of the electricity marketplace, given the planned transition outlined within the Energy Policy away from carbon emitting sources of energy to less polluting options.
- The market structure element of the Strategy will include:
- clarity around the role of competition in the marketplace
- the role of Guernsey Electricity, and
- outline options for the financing of the required transition.
- This will then be used to inform the regulatory regime required to deliver the market framework, which will follow on from the approval of the Electricity Strategy.
- The supply element will:
- provide an overview of the options for the sources of supply,
- include the setting of any renewable energy targets, and
- set out the implications of the future of island supply on security requirements.
- There will also be consideration of investment required across the whole period to 2050, including more immediate investment decision requirements to meet the 2030 interim target, and the flexibility to allow for deviations in the pathway.
- The demand element will provide an understanding of the changes in the required provision of electricity, and will also consider energy efficiency measures and demand management options.
- A technical consultation is underway which will help to determine the preferred pathway, and help shape the final direction of the Electricity Strategy. The Electricity Strategy is on-track to be debated by the States of Deliberation by the end of 2022.
Energy Partnership Group
- The Energy Policy recognised the need to establish a formal relationship with energy providers and the relevant regulator, and directed the Committee for the Environment & Infrastructure to establish the Energy Partnership Group.
- The purpose of the Energy Partnership is to:
- work with government on the delivery of a number of elements of the policy,
- pro-actively provide efficiency and demand reduction measures through energy providers,
- promote consumer awareness of the environmental and financial benefits of energy efficiency via energy providers,
- to devise and promote measures to reduce energy demand, and
- to ensure consumers are provided with clear information on energy use.
- The Energy Partnership has been fundamental to the development of the Electricity Strategy, and will continue to be involved and help shape the energy transition.
Stakeholders across the Island, along with local energy market representatives helped to design and develop the Energy Policy 2020 - 2050. Energy providers, industry experts, and members of the public played a large role in the development of the policy. Everybody will have a role to play now, and in the future, to implement the vision.
The Bailiwick of Guernsey is fortunate to be in a position where there are abundant resources of wind, wave, tidal and solar that can be utilised to produce power. The Renewable Energy Team (RET) have looked to exploit the natural resources in the waters of the Bailiwick by exploring the possibility of marine renewable energy, with Alderney working independently on the potential exploitation of their waters. Renewable energy could increase the security of supply to the Island, the Islands energy independence and reduction of the Island's carbon footprint. As the Island is located in the English Channel, with the west coast facing the Atlantic and other islands in close proximity, Guernsey is well placed to utilise offshore renewable energy.
- 2008 - The States of Guernsey decided to start looking into renewable energy in the waters around Guernsey, particularly wave and tidal projects.
- 2010 - The States approved the Renewable Energy (Guernsey) law, 2010 and the Guernsey Renewable Energy Commission (GREC) was established as an independent statutory body to provide oversight of marine renewable energy in the Island's territorial seas. The Renewable Energy Team (RET) was also established, tasked with enabling marine renewable energy development within Guernsey waters. The RET support the Committee for theEnvironment & Infrastructure.
- 2011 - A Regional Environmental Assessment was carried out. The strategic study established the likely environmental impacts associated with the deployment of Marine Renewable Energy devices in the seas around Guernsey. This was extended, in 2011, to offshore wind.
- 2014 - At the Thetis International Conference on Marine Renewable Energy in Cherbourg a Framework for Co-operation was signed with Ouest Normandie Energies Marines. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed with South West Marine Energy Park. These actions forged strong links with other regions.
- 2015 - Secondary legislation concerning licensing was approved by the States in the Renewable Energy (Guernsey) Ordinance 2015.
- 2017- The Renewable Energy Strategy was published and sets out a long term vision and strategy for marine macro renewable energy (offshore wind, wave and tidal power) in Guernsey. The document shows what levels of local marine renewable power that could be achieved as well as other positive impacts renewable energy may have in Guernsey.
- 2020 - The Energy Policy 2020-2050 actions and outcomes will create the conditions for local renewable energy generation.
Marine Renewable Technology
- There has been a lot of information available recently on developments in the marine renewable energy field, but it should be borne in mind that most of these wave and tidal technologies are still at an early stage of development. It is not anticipated that the Island will be able to receive any energy from tidal power for some years (the exact date is difficult to accurately estimate), but it is important that RET and Guernsey in general are ready to utilise these new technologies, when the time is right. Trial/small commercial projects are ongoing. For example, the Orkney tidal stream project.
- Technologies currently being used are not yet in commercial production. This, coupled with the difficulties of the marine environment, means that energy from marine renewable sources will initially cost much more to produce than electricity produced by conventional fossil fuel based generation plants. In addition to the purchase cost, there is also the necessary cabling and beachhead connections to join the generators to the power grid. It is hoped that the Islands will be able to benefit from the renewable energy generated by our tides and possibly receive an income through the supply of surplus electrical power via the subsea electrical cable link to France, via Jersey (GJ1) or directly to France (GF1).
- There are a number of renewable energy options that may be applicable to Guernsey.
- Tidal current devices - these extract energy from the flow of water, and often take the form of propellers or oscillating vanes fixed to a structure that is mounted on the seabed.
- Wave energy devices - these take energy from waves. There are a number of types of device including buoy-type point absorber devices and near-shore or shallow water devices.
- Offshore Wind - Guernsey has a significant wind energy resource and although areas of suitably shallow water off the west coast are limited there is sufficient area for small scale development. RET is currently looking at the mature technology of monopole turbine as offshore floating turbines are still being developed. RET are continuing to monitor the progress of floating turbines as in the future there is the possibility of deploying these turbines off the west coast.
- The above options are considered to be most suitable for Guernsey due to the geography of the region and formed the focus of the Regional Environmental Assessment of Marine Energy. Developments are continually monitored regarding other technology options for possible future use.
- Tidal Barrages or Lagoons -RET are continuing to monitor progress in developments of tidal range options given recent progress including the ongoing process to develop Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon. There are a number of bays, inlets and areas of shallow water around the coast of Guernsey.
Reports, Reviews & Strategies
- Offshore Wind - Preliminary Feasibility Final Report [1Mb]
- Public acceptability of offshore wind and tidal energy in Guernsey Summary Report 2015 [1Mb]
- Renewable Energy Ordinance 2015 [561kb]
- Renewable Energy Strategy 2017 [751kb]
- Renewable Energy Team Summary of Achievements 2014 [222kb]
- Renewable Energy Team Summary of Achievements 2015 [290kb]
- Renewable Energy Team Summary of Achievements 2016 [541kb]
Fuel - Security of Supply (Hydrocarbons)
Following the approval of the Energy Policy 2020 - 2050 the Hydrocarbon Programme Board meet quarterly and report on the interim and long-term solutions for continuation of hydrocarbon supply to the island.
Overall, hydrocarbons are predicted to steadily decline in usage, due to increased efficiencies in technologies for heating, lighting, and transport, and with increased electrification, energy innovation and the global transition away from fossil fuels to renewable energy and low carbon alternatives.
The 'Not always afloat but safely aground' (NAABSA) vessels that are currently used to import hydrocarbon fuels to Guernsey have limited lifespans. Alternative, and interim, long-term solutions are therefore required and being developed. The States Energy Team regularly engage with fuel providers who are planning and developing transition to interim and long-term solutions for continued supply and security of supply of hydrocarbons to the island. In Guernsey, there will be a continued need for hydrocarbons beyond 2050. More recently local fuel providers have proved the commercial viability of unitised/containerised trailers, via roll-on/roll-off ships, supply to the island. Solutions are continually in development in this rapidly changing landscape, and the Hydrocarbon Programme Board review and monitor developments in line with agreed objectives and principles of the Energy Policy 2020 - 2050, and the Climate Change Policy and Action Plan.
Fuelling our future
- As an insular community, Guernsey relies on a constant supply of fuel from off the island for many essential elements of life including petrol for cars, motorcycles, boats, buses and business vehicles, heating for our homes and offices and the generation of some of our electricity.
- These hydrocarbon fuels (including petrol, diesel, kerosene, aviation fuel and heavy oil) are brought to the island by sea using specialist tankers. The ships collect the fuel from refineries in the UK before sailing to St Sampson's Harbour where their cargo is offloaded through pipelines to the large storage tanks that are a familiar sight at North Side, Bulwer Avenue and the Power Station. The fuel is then delivered to businesses and homes by road tanker. Although the States owns two specialist tankers (the Sarnia Cherie and Sarnia Liberty), they are used to transport only some of the products that Guernsey imports. Other vessels and importation methods are required to import the heavy fuel oil and liquid petroleum gas. The States Energy Team work alongside fuel and energy organisations to support security of supply to the island now and in the future.
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