The Green Energy Revolution

by 18 February 2019

As a nation, the UK have constantly implemented and exceeded carbon emission targets aimed at moving away from the use of non-renewable energy such as fossil fuels for electricity generation. Back in the early 1990’s coal-fired power generation accounted for nearly 70% of the UK’s supply mix. A figure which now stands somewhere closer to 7%.

These figures have mainly been down to a commitment from the UK government to turn away from coal fired generation but is also strongly believed to be a direct impact from the heavy investments in renewable/green technologies.

Greenpeace emphasises why there is a need to reduce the use of coal as a fossil fuel ‘Although the world has access to enough clean energy to meet our energy needs six times over, it also has an abundance of coal.

Globally coal is the greatest climate threat we face, contributing more to global warming than any other fossil fuel. Coal contains more carbon than other fossil fuels, so it releases more carbon than the other fuels when it’s burned.’

With large industrial & commercial businesses choosing to switch to LED lighting, solar powered energy generation and electric powered heating, over 30% reduction in coal reliance has been produced. The graph below gives a clear indication as to where the UK’s electricity is being generated from and shows what the level of use of inefficient fuels could have been without these (dotted lines).


Source: Carbon Brief 

Carbon Brief, a UK based energy and climate policy website, claims that without these sizeable shifts towards renewable power generation and energy-efficiency, the UK’s overall carbon emissions could have been twice as high today as they were in 1990. In this scenario, the proportion of emissions related to electricity generation would also have been four times that of present levels.

“Without the factors that have driven major shifts in recent years, coal would have remained king, with gas, wind, bio-energy and solar all remaining negligible,” the web-based specialist explains.

“Nuclear generation would have remained largely the same, with somewhat higher output in recent years.”

It is again the sentiment of the industry that the UK Governments plans to fully remove coal from our electricity generation mix by 2025 and as such will continue to see heavy investments in renewable technologies. However, there are still long strides to take if the UK is to meet its Fifth Carbon Budget. The Gov.uk website explains  ‘A carbon budget places a restriction on the total amount of greenhouse gases the UK can emit over a 5-year period. The UK is the first country to set legally binding carbon budgets’. The major carbon offending industries are farming and transport, requiring ‘fundamental reform’ according to the Committee on Climate Change (CCC).

Utility Team actively work with clients to push down carbon emissions, with introductions to self-generating and renewable technologies. One key part of this process is allowing our clients access to our Revolving Green Fund. A mechanism set up entirely to assist clients with an upfront capital expenditure or funding injection, allowing them to invest in a technology of choice, without the need to front the total value.

With the fund in place, technologies such as solar, CHP, wind and battery storage are within easy reach of any UK business. As the UK works towards a zero coal generation target, the only way businesses are able to stay one step ahead is to invest for the longer term.

If you are interested in an interest free upfront fund to invest in your business, we encourage you to  contact us at your earliest convenience:  02476 997901 or enquiries@utilityteam.co.uk

 

Article written by: Scott Harries, Business Development Manager