It’s been an historic week for the energy sector. The National Grid confirmed on Wednesday (8th May 2019) that Britain was coal-free for an entire week: the first time since the industrial revolution.
Fintan Slye, Director of @ng_eso – “As more and more renewables come onto our energy system, coal-free runs like this are going to be a regular occurrence. We believe that by 2025 we will be able to fully operate Great Britain’s electricity system with zero carbon.”
— National Grid ESO (@ng_eso) May 8, 2019
The UK is not totally out of the woods yet though. Coal-fired power stations are still used as a backup when the demand for power is high.
Using coal to produce power is one of the greatest threats to the climate. Since 2012, burning coal is the largest source of carbon dioxide emissions. This is, in part, due to the fuel being the cheapest fossil fuel on the market.
The Committee on Climate Change have recently released a new report, which key findings included a new emissions target of net-zero greenhouse gases by 2050 to meet the Paris Agreement the United Kingdom signed 1 April 2016.
We still have a way to go, but positive change is finally getting underway.