Letter: Your report got its statistics wrong (“The nuclear option runs out of steam”, last week). Nuclear power does not account for 20% of our energy use. It is more like 19% of electricity use, or about 6% of our energy use. What is more, nuclear electricity does not step in when solar and wind are running at reduced levels, except possibly to a minor extent. Coal and gas power performs that function. For years, the government has been designing energy policy on the assumption that electricity is the important part, but that risks encouraging excessive demand for this source of energy through the increased use of electric power in transport and the ill-judged and expensive attempt to transfer heating to electricity. When we generate electrical energy, it can be a wasteful and expensive process. So why, for example, use electricity to heat country homes when they could be heated perfectly well by wood, which is in worldwide glut supply because of the reduction in paper usage? Yet that seems to be the government’s intention in its intervention in the market. It may not be too long before electricity starts to look very expensive and the lights could go out. People should understand why there is that danger.
Times 23rd Dec 2018 read more »