Note: for ‘energy’ read ‘electricity supply’ in this report from Utility Week on the UK’s crumbling National Grid.
The UK will need to invest an “eye-watering” £215 billion in its energy system by 2030 in order to replace ageing assets and decarbonise, analysis by Barclays Research has found.
As the country undergoes an “energy revolution” nearly half – £95 billion – will need to be spent on disruptive technologies such as renewables, battery storage and distributed generation.
“With electricity security of supply already on a knife edge, the UK faces the obsolescence of approximately 40 per cent of its current aged [combined cycle gas turbine] fleet by around 2020 and approximately 70 per cent of all reliable generation capacity by 2030,” the report said.
In addition to losing 15GW of unabated coal capacity by 2025 due to pledged phase out, the report said by 2030 the UK is also expected to lose: 7.7GW of the current 8.9GW of operational nuclear capacity; 22GW of gas generation capacity, 13GW of it by 2020; and 2.3GW of biomass conversion capacity due to the ending of government subsidies in 2027.
“Shoring up the UK’s current tenuous electricity security of supply in the face of this mass obsolescence of baseload generation capacity, combined with government policy to achieve a 57 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2032, will require an eye-watering level of investment over coming years,” it said.