Organisers of the UK’s largest renewable-energy exhibition and conference were last night celebrating another record attendance.
All-Energy, held at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre, has grown steadily since it was first held in 2001. The annual event started off with an attendance of just 350, but numbers have increased every year to 4,000 last year.
By the time the two-day event closed its doors yesterday afternoon, about 4,600 people had visited.
This year’s show featured 380-plus exhibitors and more than 220 speakers.
All-Energy now attracts visitors from all over the world, including Australia, China, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand and Japan.
Project director Judith Patten said: “The growth of the show has been consistent with what has been going on in the renewable energy industry internationally.
“A number of our exhibitors started out in tiny stands and have grown over the years to have a huge presence.”
Miss Patten said exhibitors had been exceptionally busy.
“Many useful contacts have been made, which will undoubtedly lead to deals being done down the line.”
She said planning had already begun for next year’s All-Energy, which she anticipates will be even bigger than 2008.
North-east exhibitors were delighted with how the show went.
Ian Nicol, managing director of Aberdeen firm Active which specialises in sustainable low-energy ventilation and air-conditioning services for the construction industry, said the event had been a great success for the business, generating about £250,000 worth of potential contracts on the first day alone.
He added: “It has given us a fantastic opportunity to show renewable-energy systems in action at our stand and we have had a high level of requests for further information and demonstrations which will lead to new business for us.”
Colin Manson, managing director of Aberdeen-based oil and gas engineering consultant Xodus Group, said: “The show has been a huge success for Xodus and has given us a targeted platform to launch our new marine renewables service.
“There has been a great buzz at this year’s exhibition. We have made some promising new business leads, which is testimony to the success of having a presence at an industry-specific exhibition like All-Energy.”
David Sutton, chief executive of offshore marine and consulting firm Noble Denton , which has an operation in Aberdeen, said the show had been very useful and, in particular, he was very pleased with how the oil and gas and renewables industries could work together so successfully.
Gary Lindsay, business development co-ordinator of Ferguson Modular, of Inverurie, part of Ferguson Group, said: “We have become increasingly involved in the renewables sector with contracts from Subocean and Oceanteam and this has been an excellent opportunity to meet with other companies in the industry and generate new leads.”
Annette Thomas, UK business development director of Opito – the Oil and Gas Academy, said: “Having a presence at All-Energy has helped strengthen our relationships with other trade organisations, as well as raising the academy’s profile with overseas delegates.”
Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat energy spokesman Liam McArthur, who had been at All-Energy, has demanded the immediate publication of the Scottish Government’s energy strategy.
It also emerged that Statoil Hydro had decided to build the world’s first full-scale floating wind turbine and test it over two years offshore Karmoy, Norway. It is investing about £40million to build and develop the pilot, and for research and development of the wind-turbine concept.
Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group has announced the winners of its 2008 photographic competition, which attracted nearly 150 entries.
Chief operating officer Morag McCorkindale said: “We are delighted with the response to the competition and the range and quality of images that were sent in.”
The main winners, who each received £400, were:
Individual/overall: Robin Wilson, of Aberdeen – Glens of Foudland windfarm.
Professional: Ron Stephen, of Perthshire – engineer at work on first wind turbine at Drumderg, Alyth;
Primary school: Melissa Toye, of Aberdeen – stormy sea at Stonehaven beach;
Secondary school: Josh Williamson, of Aberdeenshire – Fraserburgh beach and harbour.
Comment: Page 17