Offshore wind will power every home in the UK by 2030
11th October 2020 | Commercial Energy
Speaking at the Conservative Party conference earlier this week, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out a bold vision for the future of the UK’s energy system. During his speech, the PM outlined a new energy strategy that will be driven by offshore wind, and underpinned by hydrogen and carbon capture. The Prime Minister’s green package has been designed to help the UK meet its ambitious climate targets. It includes hydrogen fuel, carbon capture and storage, more wind farms, and bringing forward the ban on the sale of new petrol cars. Experts predict that the full range of multibillion-pound initiatives will be unveiled at the end of October.
The UK is currently the world’s largest user of offshore wind power, with about 10 gigawatts of capacity installed. However, the Prime Minister’s plan means that the 2030 target for offshore power generation will be raised from 30GW to 40GW. Offshore wind currently meets 10 per cent of our electricity demand, but should the Prime Minister’s plan come to fruition, offshore wind will produce more than enough electricity to power every home in the country by 2030.
The new plan is part of a wider shift towards clean, renewable energy. According to the government’s figures, the UK has cut carbon emissions by more than any similar developed country over the past decade. In 2019, UK emissions were 42 per cent lower than in 1990. Over this time, the country has pushed through a dramatic change in its power mix, from coal to natural gas and wind.
Although the UK has shifted away from fossil fuels towards natural gas, wind power is a far cleaner sources of energy (natural gas generates around half the emissions of coal). Plus, the UK is well-positioned to provide energy through offshore wind. As a country, we have a third of the world’s offshore wind installations, as well as the world’s first floating wind farm. Although the UK is already a world leader in this regard, the country’s dominance will grow even further when the world’s largest offshore wind farm, Dogger Bank, starts up off Yorkshire’s coast in 2023.
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