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UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to announce this week that the government will target to have all the electricity generation in the country to come from zero-emission sources by 2035, as part of Britain’s pledge to become a net-zero economy by 2050, The Times reported on Sunday.
The UK government plans an announcement for massive investment in renewable energy, as well as nuclear energy, in order to reduce its reliance on gas and oil amid a power crunch that has led to skyrocketing gas and power prices and pushed more than half a dozen suppliers out of business.
According to The Times, Johnson will argue that with massive new renewable power generation, the UK would limit its exposure to the highly volatile prices of fossil fuels, especially gas.
Last year, Johnson said that the United Kingdom would aim to become a global leader in offshore wind energy, powering every home in the country with wind by 2030.
Renewable generation, as a percentage of generation, hit a record 43.1 percent in 2020, outpacing for the first-time annual fossil fuel generation, the government said in its annual statistics in July. Ten years ago, renewable generation was 6.9 percent of all power generation. Wind generation is a critical element of renewables performance, the government says, adding that wind power reached a record high 24.2 percent in 2020, up from 2.7 percent in 2010.
Fossil fuel generation, on the other hand, reached a record low, dropping from 75.4 percent of generation to 37.7 percent over the last ten years.
Although the share of coal has dropped at a record low, a lot of natural gas is still used for power generation in the UK.
The whole of Europe, including the UK, is grappling with soaring natural gas and electricity prices ahead of the winter heating season due to tight gas supplies, very low gas inventories, and low wind power generation amid still weather.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com