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Ed Davey, the UK climate and energy secretary, recently told the government that he has approved plans to build twenty new natural gas fired power stations. He also insisted that this huge expansion in fossil fuel power plants will not harm investment in renewable energy, or the government’s plans to reduce carbon emissions.
“I strongly support more gas, just as I strongly support more renewable energy. We need a big expansion of renewable energy and of gas if we are to tackle our climate change challenges.”
“People who see the UK's energy future as a competition between renewable and gas are misreading the next phase.”
Davey will announce his new energy strategy this autumn, including the large role that gas will play. It is expected to involve the investment of hundreds of billions of pounds in new electricity generation installations. He has already admitted that the government plans to develop 20GW of gas-powered electricity generation between now and 2030.
Environmentalists are worried that a dash for gas would make any carbon reduction targets impossible to achieve. Joss Garman, the political director of Greenpeace, said that “green-lighting a whole fleet of new fossil fuel power stations would cause a huge jump in emissions and blow this autumn's once-in-a-generation opportunity to replace dirty power stations with clean ones.”
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com