Labour has launched a future energy plan outlining how a net benefit of £800bn could be realised in the UK, by fast-tracking the nation’s energy sector to net-zero emissions by 2030. Labour’s 187-page 30 by 2030 report details how 1.9% of GDP would be spent each year to transform and radically decarbonise the energy sector. The allocated GDP is the same that was set aside to help meet the UK’s Climate Change Act by 2050. The plan identifies four key areas, and 30 subsequent recommendations to transform the sector over the next decade; reducing energy waste in buildings and industry; decarbonising heat; boosting renewable and low carbon electricity generation and balancing the UK’s supply and demand. The commitment is part of the Green New Deal motion which delegates at the party’s conference in Brighton voted to adopt by an “overwhelming majority”. Since then, Labour tasked an independent group of energy experts to create blueprints that would offer a feasible pathway to net-zero emissions in the energy sector by 2030. The resulting report’s 30 recommendations include upgrading every UK home with energy-saving measures, tackling fuel poverty, installing eight million heat pumps, installing 7,000 offshore wind turbines and 2,000 onshore turbines and tripling the UK’s current solar panel capacity. The report claims that this would provide an £800bn benefit to the UK economy and create 850,000 new skilled jobs in green industry.
Edie 24th Oct 2019 read more »
The release of the plan follows a motion passed by members at the Party’s conference last month to “work towards a path to net zero carbon emissions by 2030” and “work towards a path of net zero carbon emissions within keeping of the IPCC advice including to keep global average temperature rises below 1.5C”. As a result, Labour said it tasked a group of independent energy industry experts with identifying “the most radical feasible pathway to decarbonise the energy system by 2030”. The resulting report today targets at least 90 percent of direct electricity demand from renewable and low carbon sources by 2030, which would see current nuclear capacity maintained alongside a tripling of renewables output. Solar output would triple to 35GW, onshore wind would need to reach 30GW, and offshore wind would see a near seven-fold increase to reach 52GW over the next 10 years, while tidal energy would also be scaled up to 3GW, it states. The strategy would also require a rapid phase out of fossil fuels such as coal and fracking, alongside a 72 per cent reduction in natural gas power output, with fossil fuel power only permitted if coupled with carbon capture and storage technologies “meaning no greenhouse gases are emitted to the atmosphere at any point”, it explains. It also targets 50 per cent renewable and low carbon heating in homes and buildings by 2030 – a more than 12-fold increase from today – with plans to install eight million heat pumps, eradicate fossil fuel heating in new buildings, and rollout fuel poverty solutions such as insulation and double glazing. Such a strategy would create 850,000 new jobs across the green energy sector in the 2020s, in addition to slashing annual health costs to the NHS to the tune of £400m as a result of improved air quality and reduced fuel poverty, according to Labour.
Business Green 24th Oct 2019 read more »
There are certainly sufficient proposed nuclear power sites within the UK to replace decommissioned plants between now and 2030. The UK government currently aims to deliver 12GW of new nuclear capacity by 2030, and has proposed a further 2.3GW, from a range of new sites (Hinkley C1/C2, Sizewell C1/C2, Wylfa Newydd ½, Oldbury B1/B2, Moreside ½/3 etc).143 Of these only Hinckley C is under construction. The nuclear power capacity contributing to supply in 2030 is therefore 8.9GW, resulting in around 63TWh of output in 2030, contributing 15% of the renewable and low-carbon electricity needed. Given the large number of nuclear plants being decommissioned over the coming 7 years, it may be possible that in the mid 2020s the nuclear capacity drops below that of today, but this strategy assumes that this number then increases back to 8.9GW by 2030. However, at the time of writing there remains uncertainty around much of the planned and proposed new capacity in the UK. For instance, Toshiba has recently pulled out of the planned Mooreside plant in Cumbria for financial reasons. That plant was intended to account for 3.4GW of nuclear power, and was originally planned for 2024.144 Hitachi have also recently pulled out of the planned Wylfa nuclear plant in Angelsey, also for financial reasons. The assumption for this strategy, as per Labour Party policy, is to maintain nuclear generation capacity in the UK at its current level out to 2030, and so we assume these new reactors will be developed only to the extent required to replace the 8GW of existing plant capacity that is expected to come offline. This could still certainly be achieved, however. Hinkley Point C is under construction and due for completion in 2025. Nearing the completion date there would be much more certainty around the cost of construction. The Sizewell C site could house very similar plant to Hinckley Point C, at 3.2GW, meaning total of 6.4GW, meaning only 3GW needs to be found. Again there are multiple sites where a third 3.2GW plant could be housed. Sizewell on the east coast could be anther option, or Bradwell in Kent. These are all in the south east, so from the point of view of supporting local industry, other sites in the north could be considered, such as Wylfa. This analysis serves to give confidence that with the right government support, nuclear capacity in 2030 could be returned to today’s output levels.
Labour Party (Expert Briefing) 24th Oct 2019 read more »
Labour net-zero blueprint calls for 9,000 new wind turbines by 2030. More than half of the UK’s electricity needs should be supplied from wind power by 2030, according to a radical new decarbonisation plan drawn up for the Labour Party. The 30 by 2030 report stops short of committing to net-zero by 2030 but does set a target of 90 per cent of non-transport electricity demand being met from renewable and low-carbon sources.
Utility Week 25th Oct 2019 read more »
The UK’s solar capacity would need to nearly triple to 35GW to decarbonise by 2030, a report into the fastest path to decarbonisation over the next decade has found. The Thirty by 2030 report, produced for the Labour Party, outlined the fast-track strategy to meeting a net zero emissions target by 2030, a date proposed last month during its annual conference. Under the proposals, a significant ramping up of solar capacity to 35GW would be required, a figure which would include building integrated small-scale systems and utility scale farms. This would break down into 4.5GW capacity from small-scale, assuming an average domestic system size of 2kW, and 25.5GW from large-scale PV. Dramatic reductions in subsidies have “nearly stalled the PV industry”, the report said, acknowledging installations will be limited over the next couple of years until government support is reinstated. To deliver the pathway, financial incentives and removal of outstanding barriers to development are needed.
Solar Power Portal 24th Oct 2019 read more »