Boris Johnson has confirmed plans for all of Britain’s electricity to come from renewable sources by 2035 as he seeks to reduce the country’s dependence on gas and other fossil fuels. The Prime Minister is expected to increase investment in renewable and nuclear energy as Britain faces an energy price surge. He is expected to argue that taking all electricity from green sources would be a significant step towards the government’s ambition to hit net zero emissions by 2050.
Daily Mirror 4th Oct 2021 read more »
BBC 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Edie 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Drunk on the latest fossil fuel energy crisis, the UK Government has handed the British public a giant nuclear hangover that will leave the country scrabbling for renewable energy solutions. Boris Johnson has promised 40 GW of offshore wind by the end of the decade, which, when added to other renewable energy sources, will generate over three-quarters of current levels of UK electricity consumption. But this growth could be threatened by the nuked-up knee jerk reaction to the current natural gas price crisis that will plunge the energy budget into a massive deficit and leave the electricity system dangerously unbalanced. After fossil fuel prices subside back towards their more usual levels, this will constitute a giant hangover. The last time we had an energy crisis, in 2008 and 2011 when oil prices spiked, the UK ended up with what was regarded as a bad deal to pay (in today’s money) over £110 per MWh for Hinkley C over 35 years. That was the hangover after the last crisis. This time it is likely to be worse as the Government recycles its own half-truths to generate a colossal public sector loss in building more nuclear power plant at Sizewell C and, then, it hopes, at Wylfa. These plans would, eventually, ensure that around 20 percent of UK electricity comes from nuclear power, but also ensure that efforts to balance the much cheaper renewable energy will be poorly developed at best, and ignored at worst.
100% Renewables 4th Oct 2021 read more »
The prime minister has confirmed plans to eliminate fossil fuels from UK electricity generation by 2035. Speaking during the Conservative party conference, Boris Johnson said the proposed shift would help the UK decarbonise, while softening the impact of the kind of gas price fluctuations that have prompted fears of a winter energy crisis in recent weeks.
Guardian 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Independent 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Boris Johnson’s pledge to make Britain’s electricity system “net zero carbon” by 2035 would be “extremely challenging” to achieve in just 14 years and would likely require a continued role for natural gas, according to energy analysts. The warning came as environmental groups welcomed the prime minister’s commitment, which was announced in a speech by business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng at the Conservative party conference in Manchester on Monday. Energy specialists, however, said reducing Britain’s reliance on natural gas in the power sector would be difficult and expensive. The country’s dependence on the fossil fuel, which is the UK’s single biggest source of electricity generation accounting for almost 40 per cent of output, has been thrown into stark relief in recent months as wholesale prices for gas hit record highs. Kwarteng said the crisis had demonstrated the need to “step up efforts” to end the country’s vulnerability to international gas prices. “The only way to strengthen Britain’s energy security is zero-carbon power that is generated in this country,” he said.
FT 4th Oct 2021 read more »
As Boris Johnson confirmed plans to decarbonise the electricity grid by 2035, the UK was sourcing almost 40% of its power from fossil fuels, underscoring the scale of the challenge ahead. The government’s target, announced on Monday with less than a month until the start of the Cop26 climate conference in Glasgow, is a key component of its pledge to reach net zero carbon dioxide emissions by 2050. That broader effort will probably involve much more widespread use of electric vehicles, and electric heat pumps in the home, meaning the UK must generate much more power but with far lower emissions. The challenges involved are monumental.
Guardian 5th Oct 2021 read more »
One of his big set piece announcements during this Tory conference week is reportedly going to be an improbable-sounding promise that all of Britain’s electricity will come from renewable sources by 2035 – just 14 years from now. The lot. Every last gigawatt. Reading between the lines of outline reports of his impending new energy policy yields one note of reassurance – that the Prime Minister has decided to define nuclear as a source of green, or “clean”, energy. So not only will he aim to increase offshore wind output from 10GW of electricity a year to 40GW by the end of the decade and to 60GW soon after, but he has also decided “to get back into nuclear…to increase our clean energy generation”. Thus, when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine, the splitting of atoms will keep the lights on instead of the burning of gas, oil and coal doing that job. It has been obvious to most sensible people for some time that an expanded nuclear capacity was necessary. But it is doubtful that the darkest Greens will ever be quite won round to the fuel source involved in the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters. A much bigger danger for Johnson and the Tories is how the British public as a whole will react once someone puts a price tag on this new double-quick abandonment of fossil fuels. In case the PM has forgotten, it was only on Friday that the energy price cap was relaxed, enabling suppliers to jack up domestic power bills by 12 per cent, or around £140 per year. Further relaxations are, as they say, in the pipeline and will have a similar depressing impact on living standards. Mr Johnson appears to think that dangling the prospect of being liberated from dependency on gas, coal and oil, will cheer people suffering right now from price spikes in fossil fuels, billing renewables as a way to “bring the cost of energy down and bring down the cost of transport”.
Telegraph 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Letter: Nick Stern: The announcement that all of the UK’s electricity will come from renewable sources by 2035 is very welcome (report, Oct 4). To reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 we must electrify the major systems and sectors of our economy including energy, transport and heating. An early transition to an electricity system derived from clean energy underpins all this. Our present energy crisis has shown that we must move away from a reliance on global gas and oil supplies. Investing in the creation of diverse sources of domestic clean energy will make our electricity system more resilient and will drive jobs and economic growth. Furthermore, consumers will benefit as the cost of clean energy goes on declining. We will not only free ourselves in the medium term from the price volatility associated with fossil fuels but also create healthier cities and natural environments. And in the shorter term, we will set a strong example for Cop26.
Times 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Nick Eyre, Director, CREDS; professor of energy and climate policy, Oxford University: electricity provides only 18 per cent of UK energy: meeting our climate goals will involve decarbonising the other 82 per cent as well. To be feasible, this will require major changes to, and reductions in, energy use. New research to be published by the Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS) tomorrow will show that a 50 per cent reduction is achievable through a combination of much more efficient technologies and social change, including more active travel, healthier diets and less waste. At present the government has no plan to achieve anything like this. Attention must focus on how we use energy.
Times 4th Oct 2021 read more »
Alison Downes: You report that Boris Johnson will announce that all of Britain’s electricity will come from renewable sources by 2035, and that he will “commit his party to plans to hugely increase investment in renewable and nuclear energy”. There are two problems with this: nuclear energy is neither green, because its waste remains radioactive for 100,000 years, nor renewable, as uranium is a depleting resource.
Times 4th Oct 2021 read more »