26.08.16 £215 billion needed to fix UK energy system

Posted on August 26, 2016
Archive : August 2016
Category : Energy News

That's the 'eye-watering' amount that will be needed by 2030 to replace our old power stations (70% of them) and meet our climate change commitments according to a recent report by Barclays. With our electricity security of supply buffer at an all-time low the report adds that the UK's current energy plans are simply not sufficient to deal with the scale of the problem facing us. With coal power all but gone and most of our nuclear and gas powered stations at the end of their working life it's all about to go pear-shaped for us and with literally no light at the end of this particular tunnel. With all the government tinkering and about-turns on energy policy (Hinkley Point being the latest example) potential investors are not being offered the long term reassurance they need to start spending in order to help us avoid this potential disaster.

The Barclays report comes at the same time as a new poll of 1,000 business leaders which shows that they overwhelmingly believe that the UK Government has failed to deliver us competitively-priced energy as well as energy security. Just over half believe that Government green policy has been successful when it comes to increasing the use of renewables and reducing carbon emissions. Over half however, supported fracking.

Meanwhile the Government has given the green light (and £730 million) for the world's biggest offshore wind farm some 55 miles off the Yorkshire coast. The 300 wind turbines should start generating enough clean electricity to power up to 1.6 million homes each year by 2020. Recent research by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) has revealed that if the UK scrapped Hinkley Point and spent the same money on 830 offshore wind farms we could gain the same amount of electricity for roughly the same investment and, unlike nuclear, it would be more likely to be delivered on time and within budget.

Sources: edie newsroom