Renewable energy has overtaken that of fossil fuels for the first time ever in the UK, a fact that would not have been believed a few years earlier.

Over 5 years the capacity for renewable energy has increased by 300% while that of fossil fuels has dropped by 33% due to power stations either becoming uneconomical or coming to the end of their working lives. The rate of increase in renewable outstrips the “dash for gas” in the 90’s.

Renewable energy includes; hydropower, solar, wind and biomass. It’s combined capacity has reached a total of 41.9 gigawatts which is just ahead of the 41.2 gigawatts for coal, oil and gas. The whole UK power system is slowly but surely moving from the old methods that we have used for many years to a much more eco friendly system. The output from coal has dropped by 25% in the last year alone with only 6 coal plants left in the UK.

However the output from fossil fuels is currently still greater with around 40% of electricity coming from fossils as opposed to 28% from renewable. However this figure will slowly change as we move more and more in the right direction.

In terms of which renewable is top, well that goes to wind which contributes around half the power. Solar comes in second with the energy coming from around 1,000,000 rooftops and fields. Biomass comes in third. Much of this has come as a result of the “carbon tax” imposed on generators of electricity.

Gas powered power stations however have seen a boost with Scottish and Southern Energy building a new 840MW gas power station in Lincolnshire.


Leave a Reply