Posting in Design
Is atomic or renewable energy the best way forward in Britain?
Is atomic or renewable energy the best way forward in Britain? The UK government want nuclear power to supply more of Britain's requiremnts -- which would throw EU renewable energy stipulations and targets into disarray.
Much to the discomfort of sustainability groups and renewable energy activists, the UK's renewable energy sector is already facing threats from attacked subsidies, contracts being sent abroad, and opposition to the construction of wind farms.
In the latest blow to a renewable energy future, the UK's coalition government wants to equalize the state of nuclear energy with opposing renewable energy sources, according to a document viewed by the Guardian.
One of the most influential forces that is shaping the future of renewable energy in Europe is that of the European Union's stipulation on what countries must achieve in terms of their energy use in the future.
The current target, which is meant to be achieved by 2020, is that of European countries insuring 20 percent of their energy expenditure comes from renewable sources -- such as solar power and wind technology.
The leaked document reads:
"The UK envisages multiple low-carbon technologies: renewables, nuclear and carbon capture and storage, all competing freely against each other in the years to come [...] For this reason, we cannot support a 2030 renewables target."
However, the paper does recommend "some kind of target for 2030". If this was altered to become a low-carbon energy aim, then nuclear sources would potentially be an acceptable avenue -- as it does maintain low carbon emissions -- coming behind coal and gas, and also electricity generated by hydro or solar power.
However, if the UK government has ulterior motives for this recommendation, attempting to facilitate more competition within the energy industry may not be a successful one.
In an economy where the UK's renewable energy industry has borne the brunt of cuts, subsidy removal, and limited competition through contracts being secured by foreign companies -- the nuclear sector has enjoyed over six decades of public support and subsidies.
[via: The Guardian]
Image credit: Dennis Hill
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Mar 11, 2012
Why don't they get involved in New Nuclear and sell lots of gas turbines at the same time? They have the nuclear expertise and manufacturing capacity to move UK manufacturing into an era of growth and prosperity we have not seen in 3 generations: http://lftrsuk.blogspot.com/2012/01/rolls-royce-to-develop-liquid-fluoride.html
They have several winds farms in Scotland that have to shut down when they near peak production, ie favorable winds, because the government would not pay for infrastructure upgrades to support maximum output. That task was left to the wind farm owners who naturally claim they cannot afford it. The cost of wiring in such remote areas was prohibitive. Naturally the favorable contracts forced by the governments policies pay the wind farm owners for power never created as compensation for the power that never made it to market because of the infrastructure no one wanted to pay for. Which begs the question. Why build the farms in the first place? I call this policy shift a wakeup call.