Dozens of diesel farms stand to win millions of pounds in lucrative contracts to keep the UK’s lights on, sparking anger from environmental groups. National Grid, which operates the UK’s electricity network, said small power generators had bid for 15-year contracts starting in 2020-21, as part of the government’s capacity market reforms. The contracts, for firms that produce below 100MW, will see them paid to be on standby in case of a shortfall from power sources such as coal, gas or wind. Of the total 8.7GW of back-up power that firms have offered, 3.9GW – more than the generating capacity of the Hinkley Point nuclear power station – is from generators who say they will burn either gas or diesel. The companies could make up to £787m between them, depending on how many opt for diesel over gas and how many are successful in the final auction in December.
Guardian 17th Oct 2016 read more »
Britain is poised to fund a major expansion of dirty diesel power, after up to 246 proposed new projects with a combined capacity that could exceed Hinkley Point qualified for a Government subsidy scheme to help keep the lights on. If diesel projects are as successful as in previous years of the scheme, they could be in line for consumer-funded subsidies of £800m over 15 years, according to analysts at green think-tank Sandbag. Under the “capacity market”, owners of existing or proposed new power plants compete to secure subsidies in return for guaranteeing they will be available to generate when needed in future winters. But the scheme has so far sparked an unintended boom in small, highly polluting new diesel generators, which have been able to undercut the big, efficient gas new power stations that ministers hoped the scheme would support.
Telegraph 17th Oct 2016 read more »