UK to Close all Coal Power Plants by 2025 (Nuclear and Gas to Replace)

An article in the British energy industry magazine Power reports that UK government has announced that it will close all coal-fired power stations by 2025.

The article can be read here: http://www.powermag.com/uk-to-close-all-coal-fired-power-plants-by-2025/?pagenum=1

Here’s an excerpt:

In a major speech setting out the future direction of the UK’s energy policy, Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd announced plans to restrict the use of the country’s coal-fired power stations by 2023 and close all of the facilities by 2025.

“Frankly, it cannot be satisfactory for an advanced economy like the UK to be relying on polluting, carbon intensive 50-year-old coal-fired power stations,” Rudd said while speaking in London before the Institution of Civil Engineers. “We need to build a new energy infrastructure, fit for the 21st century.”

The article states that 30 per cent of the UK’s electricity is currently generated by coal power stations, so the obvious question is what will replace coal?

One might expect wind and solar would be scaled up as a green alternative, but Amber Rudd is quoted in the article as saying that natural gas and nuclear will make up the difference — offshore wind considered to still be too expensive. In addition to the new nuclear reactor that is scheduled to be built at Hinkley Point, she states that a “new fleet” of nuclear plants will be needed. Shale gas exploration will also be encouraged in an effort to get more domestic gas supplies online.

Of course there is no mention of LENR here to help meet energy needs. I think most governments would never mention it publicly at this point, even if they are paying attention. But things can change quite quickly, and it would not surprise me if the tides turn within the next few years and – in accordance with Tom Darden’s long term dream — LENR will start being seen as an important substitute for coal.

  • Rob S

    If you want to have a laugh (hysterically) take a look at this here article on the Greenpeace Energy news desk: http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/newsdesk/energy/analysis/comment-why-hinkley-bad-deal-uk-consumer.

    Apart from the obvious problem that the government have signed a 35 year deal to buy the electricity from the French and Chinese for 2x its market value, the real eye opener for me, in relation to LENR, is later on in the article where it talks about ‘protection against curtailment’.

    Basically our great wise leaders have signed to a clause saying that even if something better comes along, like LENR for example, that makes the technology obsolete, then we will still have to continue buying their electricity (at twice the going rate) for 35years regardless!!

    “.. another interesting detail is that the deal includes protection against curtailment (the plant stops running) in case of “the evolution of power systems”, according to the CEO of EDF.
    What this means is that if the energy mix changes to include more
    renewables, storage, and demand-side management, the plant will be given
    preferential grid access or payment for power (presumably at the strike
    price) that would otherwise have been produced. This curtailment risk
    cover is also understood to extend to changes in political decision making or changes in law based on environmental and safety reasons.”

    In 15 years time the Chinese are going to be rolling around on the floor laughing at us British, as they sit in their LENR powered offices, counting their free money from British tax payers, paying for obsolete technology that was priced over the odds before it even became obsolete.

    • Agaricus

      The ‘deal’ really is quite unbelievable, especially when the stitch-ups you mention are considered. Given that true ‘renewables’ such as the Severn estuary tidal lagoons in combination with subsea turbines and floating wind turbine platforms could supply the same power at less cost, and more quickly, you really do have to wonder what lies behind Cameron/Osborne’s desperation for ‘new nukes’, seemingly at ANY cost.

  • http://www.facebook.com/100002656573372 Ian Walker

    Hi all

    So far exactly as I and others predicted several years ago.

    Kind Regard walker

  • Stephen Haigh

    Energy independence is a sensible aim. Just not with fission or fracking please!

    • bachcole

      Or the UK move could be an attempt to reduce carbon emissions.

  • Agaricus

    Hysteria with a purpose.

  • Bob Greenyer

    The UK government wants to force the adoption of Fracking – removing renewables and coal will help ensure a market for the Frackers.

    • Agaricus

      …and force us into a ‘need’ for new nuclear power stations like Hinkley Point C of course, regardless of the cost… These people are really quite dangerous.

  • http://renewable.50webs.com/ Christopher Calder

    Wind and solar are far too expensive, and are not “green” at all because they always require fossil fuel back-up and eat up too much space and resources. Nuclear energy is the final solution to our energy needs, and the best nuclear power source is some type of fusion. Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LENR) and simplified hot fusion reactor technology (Lockheed Martin) needs our support via MODEST amounts of money for research. Energy mandates and subsidies are NEVER justified. We should end all subsidies and mandates for biofuels, wind, and solar, and use just 10% of the money saved for fusion research. Unlike fission, fusion does not need uranium or plutonium, and is essentially nontoxic. Google *The Renewable Energy Disaster* for details.

    • Agaricus

      We should likewise end all subsidies for nuclear fission (several European states operate huge nuclear subsidies both overtly and covertly in order to maintain supplies to their military nuclear operations, and in order transfer some of the costs of the latter onto private electricity consumers).

      • http://renewable.50webs.com/ Christopher Calder

        No subsides for any energy system, even LENR. The marketplace should decide which energy system is best, not politicians.

        • EEStorFanFibb

          I agree 100%. but I bet you’d be surprised by which technologies win in a completely subsidy free market environment.

          “US investment bank Lazard for the past eight years has been producing an annual in-depth analysis of generation costs, tracking the fall in the costs of solar and wind energy in particular, and how they are now beating conventional fuels.”
          “The latest analysis shows wind and large-scale solar PV beating all conventional technologies on cost by a widening margin. And Lazard is hinting that battery storage is likely to follow the cost trajectory of renewable energy and be competitive without subsidies in many applications. In some cases, it already is.”

          http://reneweconomy.com.au/2015/wind-and-solar-beating-conventional-fuels-on-costs-lazard-26273

          • http://renewable.50webs.com/ Christopher Calder

            As long as it is not mandated or subsidised, I don’t care. That said, I do not believe a word of the pro wind and solar propaganda that companies and zealots have spouted for decades. It does not make energy efficiency or environmental sense now and I doubt it ever will. Good for off grid cabins and pumping water on a farm, but not for large scale energy production. LENR will kill off the wind and solar fad. Rossi does not say this only because he is being diplomatic.