UK offshore wind not 'affordable', finds KMPG

The UK could save £34bn ($54bn) by ditching its plans for wind farms and meeting carbon commitments through gas and nuclear, finds a report by the accountants KPMG.

Thinking About the Affordable estimates that relying on new nuclear and gas fired plants could enable the UK to hit its goal of a 34 per cent cut in carbon dioxide emissions from 1990 levels by 2020 at a cost of £74bn.

But current plans require spending £108bn by 2020 on wind, solar and nuclear capacity, as well as billions more for grid connections, according to the report to be published on 8 November.

KMPG highlights the potential savings from abandoning wind in the contrasting costs of new gas, wind and nuclear capacity. An 800 MW gas fired plant is estimated to cost £400m, while the equivalent capacity in either nuclear or offshore wind would cost £2.4bn.

Yet offshore wind imposes the additional burden of ancillary gas fired plants to accommodate its fluctuating output.

“Trying to meet our carbon targets with a heavy reliance on renewable energy was a laudable vision, but surely it’s time to face the facts on how the huge level of investment may translate into fuel poverty,” the report’s author Mark Powell told the UK’s Sunday Times.

RenewableUK attacked the report for overlooking wind power’s low operating costs. The trade association blamed surging energy bills on the price of gas and claimed wind farms in Germany, Denmark and Spain had helped bring down costs.

Cost is a key issue for the power sector in the UK, where rising bills from the ‘Big Six’ providers are fuelling political controversy.

Chancellor George Osborne has said the UK would not seek to lead Europe in cutting its carbon emissions nor attempt to “save the planet by putting our country out of business”.

But energy minister Chris Huhne has attacked opponents of renewable energy as an “unholy alliance of climate sceptics and armchair engineers”.

For more renewables news click here

Recommend this article Recommend this article () Yo recommended this article Yo recommended this article ()
Follow Power Engineering International on Twitter

Editor's Picks

Borwind

Siemens to lead major grid connection project

Siemens has been chosen to lead a consortium responsible for constructing and installing an offshore wind connection in th...
Rajendra Pachauri

UN advocates tripling of renewables and nuclear energy

A report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has warned that the world needs to drast...
Temelin NPP

$15bn Czech nuclear power project cancelled

The president of the Czech Republic, Milos Zeman, has called for a $15bn tender designated for the expansion of the countr...
Dr Joachim Hein

Brussels and Berlin actions on renewables welcomed by German business lobby

The Association of German Industry, or Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie (BDE), has expressed relief at the news that ...
Maria van der Hoeven

IEA praises Austria for ‘balanced’ energy policy

The International Energy Agency focused on Austria for its 2014 country review, launched on Wednesday, and while fulsome i...

PEI Magazine Issues



>> Current Issue           >> Past Issues

Latest Wire News

$41 Billion in Oil & Gas Deals in First Quarter 2014

$41 Billion in Oil & Gas Deals in First Quarter 2014

GreenBytes Now Verified for Citrix Ready VDI Capacity Program

GreenBytes Now Verified for Citrix Ready VDI Capacity Program

Great East Energy Inc. Reports FY2013 Financial Results

Great East Energy Inc. Reports FY2013 Financial Results

Garb Oil & Power Corporation Joins Both a State of Florida and National Cannabis Associations to Facilitate the Company's Immediate Expansion Into the Medical Marijuana Industry

Garb Oil & Power Corporation Joins Both a State of Florida and National Cannabis Association...

Powerdyne International, Inc. Announces Memorandum of Understanding With Silver City Aluminum Company

Powerdyne International, Inc. Announces Memorandum of Understanding With Silver City Aluminu...

Editorial Guides

How to cut your OPEX

How to cut your OPEX In a constantly evolving electricity market, factors such as over capacity and low coal costs can pu...

Alstom Editorial Guide: Thailand to showcase latest upgrade of Alstom's GT26 in combined-cycle

Read all about Alstom's new advanced GT26 gas turbine in the North Bangkok CCPP expansion project online with the Power En...

PLEXOS® Integrated Energy Model – Leading the Field in Energy Market Modelling

PLEXOS® Integrated Energy Modelling is an advanced software tool that employs the latest mathematical programming methods ...

Power Engineering International

Whitepapers

Evaluating cogeneration for your facility: A look at the potential energy-efficiency, economic and environmental benefits

The energy-efficiency, economic and environmental benefits of cogeneration are the subject of this in-depth white paper. The paper argues that producing electricity and heat/cooling from the same f...

The Effect of Moisture on the Breakdown Voltage of Transformer Oil

Power transformers utilize oil as a heat transfer medium and a dielectric material, together with cellulose. Breakdown voltage (dielectric strength) is one of the most important parameters of trans...

Improving Mission Critical Cooling Systems With More Reliable Level Sensing

The choice of coolant level sensor may seem like an insignificant detail when designing complex machinery such as emergency generators and cranes, but if this sensor fails, the operator has no warn...

Steps Towards a Low Carbon Future: Solutions and Technologies That Will Support the Global Revolution Required

A smart grid is becoming more and more essential as clean energy becomes more dominant. In addition, the demand for electricity is expected to treble the ability to supply it over the next decade. ...

Latest Digital Edition

  Power
  Engineering
  International
Look Inside >
Cover
Current Issue

Article Archives for Power Engineering International Magazine

Latest Energy Jobs