Exploring the UK’s Green Position
The summer of 2017 has seen another prolonged heatwave grip the country. Year upon year, the effects of climate change are becoming more apparent. With the UK ratifying the Kyoto, and now the Paris agreements, the government has put in place a series of measures designed to reduce our carbon emissions, meet our obligations and thus help to protect our environment and air quality for future generations.
One such piece of legislation are the carbon budgets. These commit us to reduce our greenhouse gases emissions. They are set by parliament in five year periods to restrict our CO2 emissions in relation to a base level from 1990. We are now coming to the the end of the second carbon budget (running from 2013 to 2017) and we are currently on track to outperform the 31% reduction target set.
The next budget runs from 2018 to 2022 with a promise to cut emissions by 37% on 1990 levels by 2020.
The main contributors to our greenhouse emissions are electricity production, transportation, heating and industrial processes. The UK has been working in all four of these areas to limit our impact on the climate, but has had the most success with decarbonising our electricity production. This sector has been changing in relation to the amount of electricity produced from coal, renewables and gas production.
UK Electricity Generation Mix:
As can be seen on the graph, the share of electricity production from coal has collapsed in a matter of a few years. This market change was spurred by the Government Act requiring all coal plants to be closed by 2025 in response to air quality concerns but has also reduced the high level of carbon emissions that coal produces when burned.
Also apparent on this graph is the rate of growth for renewables since 2007, this stream has seen a very high level of investment and incentives for renewables generators, although more recently some of the subsidies which helped grow the sector have been cut.
At Corona Energy, we have been active participants in the effort to help decarbonise the country. We offer our customers 100% Renewable Gas and Electricity tariff options at surprisingly competitive prices.
Signing up to our Renewable Electricity Tariff, means that all the electricity you consume will be matched by production from solar panels, wind power, bio generation or hydro.
We are also one of the few suppliers in the country to offer 100% green gas, sourced from independent British generators. This gas is produced from biomethane. Biomethane is renewable as any CO2 released during its burning is absorbed during the plant life cycle, this then feeds back to become biogas. We promise our customers that as much biomethane pumped into the grid matches the level that is consumed by the customer.
The Renewable Gas Life Cycle:
Please talk to your account manager for more information on our renewable energy products.
Innovation in energy is forever growing as we are seeing many exciting new projects underway. A report has been published on the possible production of electricity from the tide in the Bristol Estuary (the highest tide in the world). A damn could control the flow of the tide and would produce 6% of the electricity needs for England and Wales. We have also seen 23,000 solar panels, covering an area the size of 8 football pitches, floating on a reservoir south west of London, producing enough power for 1800 homes. The Scottish government is also looking to create floating offshore wind installations.
The above examples are just the tip of the iceberg and there will undoubtedly be many more innovative ideas to follow.
Why not read our article ‘Green Innovation from around the World’ for a further look into the world of weird and wonderful ideas!