Trade association Scottish Renewables has led calls for the UK and Scottish Governments to consider developing new pumped storage projects across the UK.

The association has urged the governments to join forces to drive forward pumped storage development, and has called for a the establishment of an inter-governmental panel to look at how this energy storage technology can strengthen the UK¹s energy security in a position paper released at its Hydro Conference in Perth yesterday.

There are already initial plans for investment in new and upgraded pumped storage schemes in Scotland, which could unlock over £1 billion worth of investment and create several hundred jobs during construction and operation. However, pumped Storage is not currently recognised within the UK Government¹s new Electricity Market Reform (EMR) framework.

"A new generation of pumped storage has the potential to play a hugely important role in helping deliver a secure energy system for the UK, while also providing a number of other environmental and economic benefits," commented Joss Blamire, Senior Policy Manager at Scottish Renewables "This tried and tested energy storage technology can also help facilitate our transition to a low-carbon future, ensuring that renewable energy can be stored when it is generated and used as required."

"The case for new Pumped Storage has never been stronger than it is today.That is why the renewables industry is calling on UK and Scottish Governments to establish an inter-governmental panel to consider how this technology should be supported for the benefit of the our energy security, environment and the consumer."

Among the plans underway for pumped storage in the UK include Scottish Power¹s plans to more than double output at the 440MW Cruachan pumped storage project in Lochaber. The company is carrying out a two-year feasibility study on an expansion project that could see the project produce 1040MW.

SSE has also recently gained planning consents for a scheme at Coire Glas (300 ­ 600MW) on the shore of Loch Lochy, and is developing a scheme at Balmacaan (300 ­ 600MW) on the shores of Loch Ness.