United Kingdom: 'Green' summers and winters, from rising renewables

Posted on August 06, 2019

Low-carbon energy was used to generate more than half of the electricity used in the UK for the first time in 2018, according to official figures.

A rapid increase in renewables, coupled with low-carbon electricity from nuclear reactors, covered almost 53% of production in 2018.

This was revealed by the government's annual review of energy statistics.

Energy from the sun, wind, water and waste

Renewables set a new record covering one-third of UK electricity production last year.

The UK's ability to generate energy from the sun, wind, water and waste increased by 10%.

UK coal use has fallen by a quarter to a record just 5%, according to the report.

The government's annual "energy bible" confirms a series of green energy actions in recent years.

The UK is undertaking more renewable energy projects. And it closes the old, polluting coal plants.

National Grid (the electricity grid) said the country had recorded the "greenest" winter. Due to weather conditions and declining carbon consumption.

The heatwave brakes the production of renewable energy

This was followed by the second "greenest summer" of 2017. However, it declined last year due to the heatwave.

Too hot weather can have a negative impact on renewable energy production. High-pressure weather systems can suppress wind speeds. So solar panels generate less electricity if temperatures go too high.

Coal and gas plants generated less than 45% of the UK's electricity last year.

Gas production fell to 39.5% of the production mix last year, from 40.4% in 2017.

Coal production continued to decline, falling to 5.1% last year after the closure of the Eggborough and Drax coal plants, converting one of its plants to burning biomass.

Benefits to consumers and the national economy from renewable energy sources

"Investing in renewable energy and the government's defense of offshore wind is bringing about a rapid change in our energy system."

This was stated by Emma Pinchbeck, Deputy CEO of Renewable UK, commenting on the new data.

"Along with lowering consumer prices and boosting the competitiveness of our businesses, renewable energy is a huge economic opportunity. They bring employment and investment to all parts of the UK, "he said.

The government has dropped its weight in the offshore wind sector. It promised manufacturers a share of £ 557m in state subsidies. It is enough for the industry to invest £ 250m over the next 11 years.

However, the ministers refused to open a block in support of new offshore wind farms.

"The new government, Ms Pinchbeck emphasizes, must move further and faster.

Remove the barriers to wind energy, which is the cheapest source. Building on our successes in innovative technologies. Such as tidal energy and wind. And there the United Kingdom can be a world leader. "

 

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