German Energiewende: a billion euro mistake?

Germany’s Energiewende and the resulting rapid expansion of renewable energy in Germany has been held out as the model for other nations to follow, but there are growing doubts as to its effectiveness. As I have noted before, the decision to exit nuclear power in the aftermath of the Fukushima disaster has meant that at…

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National Grid skirts calls for an independent system operator…for now

Last summer the House of Commons Energy and Climate Committee raised questions about the conflicts of interest inherent in National Grid’s role as the electricity system operator and recommended that the government should create an independent SO to mitigate these concerns (described in my previous blog post here). Not surprisingly, National Grid was opposed to…

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IFA outage: so far in 2017 this does look like a good thing

Last month I wrote about the IFA outage and suggested that the historic trend of exporting in periods of high UK demand might mean the outage is positive for UK capacity margins. So far 2017 has seen some significant system tightness, with a number of plants being offline (EDF even has several nuclear reactors out…

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Key themes in the energy market for 2017

2017 could see further interesting and potentially dramatic changes to the UK energy market. In this post I explore some of the key themes for the coming year.   # Creation of an Independent System Operator Throughout 2016 pressure was growing for the UK to explore adopting an independent system operator model, with a report from…

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Decarbonisation of transport: exploiting seasonal phenomena

I’ve recently written about the work of the Energy Policy group at Exeter University, however another team at Exeter is exploring a novel way of transport which has significant benefits in terms of speed and efficiency, while also having very low carbon emissions. Geophysicist, Dr Katy Sheen of the University’s geography department has been studying…

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Creation of local energy markets

This week saw the launch of a £19 million 3-year local energy market pilot in Cornwall. The programme, developed by Centrica and co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund, comprises four elements: A virtual flexibility marketplace; A DSR platform for businesses; Energy storage; and Micro CHP and/or batteries to be installed in up to 100…

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IFA outage: a blessing in disguise?

In my last post I commented on the impact low nuclear output in France could have on the UK electricity market, noting that if the interconnector switches to export mode, there would be a 4 GW net effect on UK capacity margins. Since then we have seen the news that due to damage sustained during…

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