UK’s coal plants to be phased out within 10 years


Source: BBC

The UK’s remaining coal-fired power stations will be shut by 2025 with their use restricted by 2023, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd has proposed.

Ms Rudd wants more gas-fired stations to be built since relying on “polluting” coal is “perverse”.

Only if gas-fuelled power can fill the void created by closing coal-powered stations would coal plants be shut, she said.

Environmentalists are concerned little is being done to promote renewables.

Announcing the consultation, Ms Rudd said: “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.

“Let me be clear: this is not the future.

“We need to build a new energy infrastructure, fit for the 21st century.”

Former US vice president Al Gore, an active campaigner for clean energy, described the announcement as an “excellent and inspiring precedent”.

If coal power plants are able to install carbon capture and storage (CCS) before 2025, they would not be closed. CCS has long been mooted as the answer to cleaning up coal plants, but very little progress has been made in developing the technology, with just one commercial scale plant currently operating in the world.

‘Energy crisis’

Currently, coal provides about a quarter of the UK’s electricity, but Ms Rudd said: “We are tackling a legacy of underinvestment and ageing power stations which we need to replace with alternatives that are reliable, good value for money and help to reduce emissions.”

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Categories: Alternative energy, UK

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