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“Greenest Summer” Spells Trouble For The UK Grid

September 26, 2017

By Paul Homewood



h/t Patsy Lacey



Will somebody please explain to this silly little girl that we cannot run a grid on renewables and nuclear alone:


Britain’s energy system provided its greenest ever electricity to homes and businesses over the summer due to a surge in wind and solar power which spells trouble for traditional power plant operators.

National Grid said almost 52pc of the country’s power demand was met by low carbon sources, such as renewable energy and nuclear power, compared to around 35pc four years ago.


The low-carbon boom was led by renewables which made up almost a quarter of all power from June 21 to September 22 from less than 10pc four years ago, and a fifth last year.

The warmer months were dotted with milestone energy moments including the first working day since the industrial revolution where the UK’s energy system was completely coal-free in April. Later in May a quarter of energy demand was met by the 7GW of solar power that was supplying electricity to the grid.

In the first week of June renewable power met over 50pc of the nation’s electricity supply and days later a surge of wind, solar, and nuclear power pushed the energy grid’s carbon intensity to record lows.

green power

Renewables made up almost a quarter of all power from June 21 to September 22 from less than 10pc four years ago, and a fifth last year Credit: Getty

“It’s been an exciting year managing the many ‘network firsts’ – from a day where we operated the system with zero coal power, to one where over half of Great Britain’s energy demand was met by renewable generation,” said National Grid’s systems boss Duncan Burt.

But the green energy bonanza is likely to put greater pressure on the operators of traditional power plants, including nuclear reactors, which make weaker returns when subsidised renewables flood the market and reduce the wholesale market price.

Roshan Patel, an analyst at Investec, told The Daily Telegraph: “Higher renewables output has meant thermal power plants are operated over ever fewer hours. In addition, generation with zero marginal cost, such as renewables, also puts downwards pressure on average wholesale prices, affecting all but subsidised renewables.”

The fall in market prices also poses a dilemma for EDF Energy which operates the country’s fleet of low-carbon nuclear plants.

Gareth Redmond-King, from WWF, said the success of the renewables industry must be matched by further commitment from the Government, which is expected to publish its long-awaited Clean Growth Plan within weeks.

“It’s time for the UK Government to step up and deliver a strong and ambitious clean growth plan, continuing to support renewables, cleaning up our transport and making our homes more energy efficient,” he said.


Take today as an example. Wind power has been nearly invisible, and the grid has been reliant on coal and gas for the bulk of demand, with nuclear supplying most of the rest.



Still, I must not be too harsh on Jillian. She does at last seem to have grasped that the subsidies shelled out for renewables are making conventional plants, both thermal and nuclear, uncompetitive. Not least because they are only able to operate at reduced hours.

It is a strange world when the National Grid’s boss finds this situation “exciting”!

Meanwhile you can always rely on the marxists at the WWF for a good laugh. Their solution to the problems caused by subsidies for reneweables? Let’s have some more!

  1. September 26, 2017 4:39 pm

    Unbefuckingbelievable ! Sorry. But for that one sentiment, I can find nought else to say. Or maybe, on reflection: When are these mental degenerates going to be prosecuted and put away for a very long time ?

  2. September 26, 2017 4:57 pm

    “over half of Great Britain’s energy demand was met by renewable generation”

    The boss of the the frigging National Grid doesn’t know the difference between energy and electricity?

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      September 27, 2017 6:53 pm

      He seems to have forgotten the gas network he also runs. Perhaps mentally it’s already sold off. Perhaps he drives a Tesla to work?

  3. MrGrimNasty permalink
    September 26, 2017 5:54 pm

    Usually behind every such claim, nuclear is dialed up to 11, and coal deliberately left idle.

    ‘subsidised renewables flood the market and reduce the wholesale market price’ and push bills ever higher – deliberately not made clear!

  4. September 26, 2017 6:22 pm

    It’s the parasites consuming the host again. They forget summer is only a small portion of the year.

  5. September 26, 2017 6:57 pm

    It’s a good job they are building GWs of battery storage. They consume a lot of the spare electricity in summer and give it all back in winter (sarc).

  6. bushwalker permalink
    September 26, 2017 7:06 pm

    I wish journalists and other non-cognoscenti would stop referring to renewables as being “zero marginal cost” generation.
    There’s a pure windfarm company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, Infigen Energy (about 1.5 GW capacity), which has a statutory obligation to publish its financial accounts annually. A perusal of these for the year ending June 30/2017 shows that they had operating expenses, i.e maintenance, rent of land, employee expenses, but excluding any capital related costs, of about AUD27/MWh.

    Hardly zero, but low compared to the AUD137/MWh they collected after cashing in their renewable energy certificates, but not so low when compared to the average wholesale price of AUD77/MWh and not low at all when compared to the lowest cost coal-fired generators of about AUD37/MWh.

  7. Andrew permalink
    September 26, 2017 7:17 pm

    The story was put out on the BBC as well. The big problem is that so many people believe all this rubbish and there is no proper analysis. It’s outrageous.

    • dennisambler permalink
      September 27, 2017 10:20 am

      They said that the grid wanted people to use the renewable energy when it was available, by using appliances, like washing machines, tumble driers, at those times, (no doubt to be announced in advance).

      So when it is sunny with some wind, turn on your tumble drier rather than stick your washing on the line outside to dry. I still cannot work out whether the electricity I am using is green coloured or not.

      • Husq permalink
        September 28, 2017 8:31 am

        >They said that the grid wanted people to use the renewable energy when it was available, by using appliances, like washing machines, tumble driers, at those times,<

        Have you got a link for that?

  8. Jo Beaumont permalink
    September 26, 2017 8:50 pm

    Yes and they said that we needed batteries to back up the renewables, and suggested that we should be encouraged to use heavy energy users, like a tumble dryer , only on a sunny windy day!! I’d save money and put it on the line on such a day!

  9. Athelstan permalink
    September 26, 2017 9:59 pm

    has anyone explained to dear Jilly bean, how much the industrial process ‘costs’; to mine, smelt, manufacture, export/transport and set [construction costs] these boogers erm whirlygigs in the ground…….. how green is that? And notwithstanding the exorbitant wages commanded by engineers who have to constantly maintain these useless fetish effigies betokening an insane religion?

    Or, is she a greenpeace plant? Or, collectively the DT [bar Booker] has lost what few marbles they ever had.

    Birdmincers are no solution and someone also needs to remind our lady correspondent ‘energy expert’ that, nuclear isn’t “free” either.

    Crikey, Marvel comics used to ‘do’ better science than presently do; the DT, Nature and the NS come to think of it. And am I living in a parallel universe where everything we learned is now ar8e about face?

  10. sean2829 permalink
    September 26, 2017 10:36 pm

    With all that free renewable electricity power bills have plummeted, right?

    • Bitter&twisted permalink
      September 27, 2017 7:27 am

      Yeah-my energy bill is much less than it used to be.

      I wish!

  11. markl permalink
    September 26, 2017 11:56 pm

    More propaganda and dissenting points of view not allowed. It will take an energy catastrophe in the UK before people notice they are being duped.

  12. Ben Vorlich permalink
    September 27, 2017 7:17 am

    It’s been wind free in Central France for about a week now. French wind generated electricity has been running at less than 1GW that time. The Nordic (Swe, Nor, Fin, Den, Est, Lat, Lith) countries have been producing about 4GW in total. Germany max 5GW but much lower most of the time, next to nothing for several days. Spain max 4GW, but much lower most of the time. Solar has been offline for most of the day, Spain is getting about 6 hours “decent” production currently. When Lee and Maria arrive it will be too windy in many areas

    Europe Wind Speed:

    Just looking at the data it is quite obvious that without fossil fuel Europe would be in serious trouble. What the Germans call Conventional has been peaking at over 50GW, not a particularly Green September so far. Will Ms Ambrose check it out properly, highly unlikely.

  13. September 27, 2017 8:45 am

    Latest: Climate change: Ministers should be ‘sued’ over targets
    By Roger Harrabin

    Only ‘zero carbon’ will do for the fanatics, regardless of the inevitable degradation of living standards.

  14. Coeur de Lion permalink
    September 27, 2017 8:45 am

    Why ‘spells trouble’ , the silly little girl? I’m sure all here watch the gridwatch Templar website for the hour to hour failure of renewables and how this green country ramps up gas to over 40% of demand all the time. Wait till the lights go out.

  15. Coeur de Lion permalink
    September 27, 2017 9:00 am

    Further to. See ‘gridwatch’ right now and look at ‘Weekly nuclear/coal/CCGT/wind (GW) box where wind and coal bumble along the. bottom entwined together all last week. Faugh!

  16. Robert Christopher permalink
    September 27, 2017 9:46 am

    It’s the Capitalist System’s fault – greed, profits, and having to obey the Laws of Physics! 🙂

    • Gerry, England permalink
      September 27, 2017 12:58 pm

      Don’t worry, the jew-hating Labour party will come to our rescue once they have finished murdering all the Royals and borrowing trillions to renationalize everything while destroying peoples’ pension funds.

      • Athelstan permalink
        September 27, 2017 2:29 pm

        once they have finished murdering all the Royals and borrowing trillions to renationalize everything while destroying peoples’ pension funds.

        That’s only the start,

        after the pound goes tits up and the food queues bend across the length of England and when the bog rolls run out and local ‘dignitaries’ are whisked round in Zil lanes and protected by the state militia former police forcemen with streets filled with uncollected rubbish and the detritus of much worse………….

        Then the state sanctioned murders will soon become genocide, but also there is the real likelihood that, prolonged blackouts may trigger social unrest ……………..labour party in government or not.

      • Jack Broughton permalink
        September 27, 2017 7:36 pm

        Its a good job that the Tories are as caring and capable as they are proving to be then……. did I hear Nigel and Boris laughing?

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