Power Conference Scotland debate on energy security and supply: Don’t panic – yet!

h/t Linda Holt – Scotland Against Spin

A few interesting quotes from the recent conference which referred to:

a major politico-economic debate erupting south of the border over a think-tank report that claims subsidised renewable energy may become the biggest policy disaster in modern British history

Murdo Fraser, a Conservative MSP, set the scene:

And the simple fact is that intermittent resources cannot provide the base load power which is necessary to provide electricity to Scotland’s homes and business at all times – whether the wind is blowing, or not.

Referring to the imminent closure of Longannet Power Station and other potential closures:

Within a decade, we can easily lose 55% of Scotland’s electricity generating capacity, and there seems to be no strategy from the SNP Government as to how we keep the lights on after 2023.

The reality is that unless we can find a way of creating new generating capacity in Scotland that is not intermittent, the only way we can keep the lights on will be to import electricity from England.

Good luck with the last point!

Hamilton MP Tom Greatrex, the shadow Energy Minister highlighted a key fact about recent renewable energy supply levels:

On Boxing Day last year (26 December 2014) wind power generated less than 1% of UK electricity demand – which triggered a near-doubling of responsive demand-led coal-fired power and a massive transfer of power from southern to northern Britain.

He recommended a non-partisan independent approach to energy policy avoiding the vagaries of political interference and short-termism:

This, he said, was the reason that Labour supported the Tory Electricity Act and why Labour will either implement an Energy Security Board if the party wins the UK general election – or will continue to press for such a move if in opposition in the next Westminster parliament.

And meanwhile, over in la-la land, Alan Mortimer, Director, SgurrEnergy said:

Scotland will meet the government target for 100% electricity generation from renewables by 2020 – and wind will be the dominant category.

Really?

Full article here.

Image by Graeme Maclean and shared under Creative Commons Licence Attribution 2.0 Generic.

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