Lights off for UK a possibility
As old power plants are being closed and new ones slow to be built, the British Royal Academy of Engineering warned that current power plants may be stretched ‘close to [their] limit.’
A study commissioned by the prime minister’s Council for Science and Technology revealed that although UK’s power supply is sufficient to cover for the standard level of demand, winter of 2014-2015 will see supply at its most strained.
Last week, the National Grid warned that blackouts are more likely to occur this winter. Two years ago, power plants held a 16% buffer between energy supply and demand. But National Grid and energy regulator OFGEM said that number could fall to 5% this winter, and go as low as 2% in 2015.
In line with the report, Business minister Michael Fallon said ‘We’re going to make sure there’s a proper reserve that we have enough power in future years and we’re investing already now in a whole new generation of power stations – new gas stations and new nuclear stations that you’re going to hear about very shortly.’