The beginning of 2019 found the UK facing serious challenges in meeting its clean energy targets. According to Renewable UK, new onshore wind installations fell by nearly 80% in 2018 to the lowest level since 2011. This precipitous drop came hard on the heels of the news that Hitachi suspended development of a nuclear power station at Wylfa in north Wales.
That announcement added to the gap in clean energy needed to meet the UK’s carbon targets. Building on work by the Committee on Climate Change, Renewable UK analysis showed that there is a gap of over 55 TWh needed by 2030 – equivalent to over 15% of annual demand – due to the closure of existing nuclear plants and other ageing power stations in the 2020s.
In contrast, the UK Government announced a £9 million increase in its renewable energy funding, in addition to the existing £15 million already committed by the government to increase the proportion of clean sources within the energy mix. This decision coincided with the announcement by small nuclear reactor (SMR) builder, Penultimate Power UK, that it has signed an agreement with the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) to replicate its nuclear technology across the UK.
These challenges and opportunities will be very much on the mind of industry leaders and innovators preparing for the UK Clean Energy Infrastructure Summit at which they will discuss the topics that are driving our energy transition. List of confirmed attendees can be found by clicking here.
On April 24th 2019 the UK Clean Energy Infrastructure Summit will examine the UK’s clean energy challenge in the round, including further expansion of renewable and nuclear energy, as well as developments in storage infrastructure. It will also address the issue of attracting international investment in UK clean energy projects against the backdrop of uncertainty caused by Brexit.
The event is to involve sessions from a variety of influential speakers such as Phil Graham of the National Infrastructure Commission and Lord John Hutton of Energy UK and will cover a multitude of key topics including:
- Transitioning the UK’s energy mix: Meeting the UK Government’s CO2 reduction commitments
- Renewable energy infrastructure: Business and investment opportunities
- Offshore wind development: Cracking UK’s clean energy potential
- Required Innovation: Scaling energy storage
- EV and smart cities: Investment in key areas for development
- Debating national nuclear generation ambitions across the UK
- Small modular reactors: Debating national nuclear generation ambitions
- Expanding smaller infrastructure: Empowering renewable energy among communities and rural areas
- The future of the heat network in the UK: risks, financing and national funding
The full event programme and confirmed speakers can be viewed on the event website by clicking the link below: