It was big news when the British government announced that all coal plants generating energy in the UK would be switched off by 2025. However, many were concerned that this would result in a sideways step and the country would go from coal power to gas power; another non-renewable source of energy.
But in 2018, the World Wide Fund for Nature has released a report that suggests that the UK has no need to build any further gas-fired power stations in order to replace the closing coal plants – as renewable energy, battery storage and flexible storage can fill the gap instead.
It has previously been asserted by the government that in order to phase out the coal plants, there needs to be a number of gas plants constructed. But this new report indicates that clean energy has the capacity to make up the shortfall.
Which types of renewable energy?
One of the reasons that clean energy can potentially bridge the gap is that there are now so many viable options that produce power. Across the country, individuals and businesses are investing in many different types of renewable power. This means that there is a clean energy solution to fit with almost every situation.
Photovoltaic solar panels continue to grow in popularity, and while they are commonly seen on the rooves of houses around the country, it is actually the large scale industrial installations that will make the biggest difference. Businesses can invest in major projects, either on the roof of a commercial property or at ground level.
Offshore windfarms can also be used to make up that energy shortfall and there has even been a push from activists and ministers to allow for onshore windfarms to be built in England with public subsidies, as they are in Scotland and Wales.
Another form of renewable energy this grown enormously in popular is that of ground source heat pumps (GSHPs). These extract energy from the ground by circulating a water and anti-freeze solution around a looped pipe. Once again, this can be created in large installations in order to provide a heat source.
Now is the time to invest in renewable energy
This all indicates that now is the right time to invest in forms of renewable energy. A £557m pot has been allocated by the government to provide renewables subsidies between now and 2025. And with the huge range of options of available, there will be a fantastic option to suit you whether you are consider installing domestic renewable energy generators or a large-scale project.
These changes have the potential not only to lower energy prices but also to lower the carbon footprint of your business or home. If the government chooses to take the advice recommended in the report from the World Wide Fund for Nature it could be hugely beneficial.