Letter: Sir Tim Smit, Co-founder and Executive Chairman, The Eden Project: The cancellation of two nuclear plants within three months puts the UK government’s 2013 energy strategy in trouble. Analysis by the Committee on Climate Change shows that a renewable path to 2030 is the least costly option for fulfilling our reduction commitment obligations. The low carbon path to 2050 is less certain, but worries that renewables are too intermittent to provide 100 per cent of UK electricity are overblown. Geothermal electricity, routine and cost-competitive in countries with active geology such as Iceland and Kenya, is coming to the UK, and could provide 20 per cent of our current electricity needs. Geothermal provides baseload power with typical capacities over 90 per cent on the smallest footprint of any energy source. Improvements in drilling and low temperature electricity generation mean that geothermal development is now possible in places where geologic activity is far in the past, such as Finland, Australia or indeed the UK. Both Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Coalition and Berkshire Hathaway are investing in geothermal energy. Britain has suffered from a lack of innovation in this technology, but this is now changing.
FT 29th Jan 2019 read more »