Western Hydro Ltd operates a 200 kW hydroelectric power station near Helston in Cornwall. Water is abstracted from the river Cober and runs in a mill leat for about 800 metres along the side of the Cober valley. It then enters the buried penstock pipe which takes it to the turbine in the semi-underground powerhouse. The valley has the remains of several mills along it and much of the old leat system is re-used.
The company’s founding principle is to generate green electricity in an ecologically and environmentally sensitive way and to contribute to the fight against global warming. The electricity they generate in an average year saves about 700 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions when compared to a coal-fired power station. They are keen to find further suitable sites to develop in the South-West.
John Collier from Western Hydro says ' We are pleased to be able to sell our electricity to Green Energy UK, a company which has the same guiding principles as ourselves.'