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We don’t need costly, slow, nuclear power: solar, wind, tidal and wave power can amply do the job

WHEN I visited Orkney in the 1970s, it was deeply involved in the North
Sea Oil boom. The Flotta oil terminal is still operating but renewable
energy – mainly wind and some tidal – generates up to 120 percent of the
electricity needed by Orkney’s 22,000 inhabitants.

The European Marine Energy Centre based in Stromness is trialling 48 tidal and wave power
projects. These include the world’s most powerful tidal turbine, Orbital
Marine Power’s O2 which from the air looks like a giant 250ft long rowing
boat off the isle of Eday. Its 2MW capacity means it could generate enough
clean, predictable electricity to meet the demand of around 2,000 UK homes
and offset approximately 2,200 tonnes of CO2 production per year.

It is just one of countless schemes around the world testing the potential of
renewables other than wind and solar to power the world and save it from
climate change. At an earlier stage of development and planned for near
Liverpool is the £3billion TPGen24, the brainchild of engineer Stuart
Murphy. Its promotional video says: “There is more than enough energy in
the UK’s tidal waters to satisfy the entire needs of the country, if only
it could be captured.

Does Britain need nuclear power to turn us green?
Yes, says Professor Ian Fells, Technical Director of Penultimate Power UK
Ltd which builds compact nuclear High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor Energy

NO Says Dale Vince Eco-entrepreneur Energy independence from clean,
green renewables is a prize well worth having – and perfectly feasible. We
have enough wind and sun to power this country many times over. Throw in
other sources, such as geothermal – heat from deep under the ground – and
marine power and there should be no need for the UK to waste £50billion a
year and rising on importing oil and gas.

Nuclear has many problems. It is hugely expensive. Nuclear power stations take 10 years to design, 10 years
to build and another 10 years to pay back their carbon debt. We don’t
have time. And at three times the cost of renewables, we don’t need to
pay for that. We can power the grid entirely from renewable energy, at a
fraction of the price in a fraction of the time and have real carbon
reductions almost straight away.

 Express 14th June 2021


June 19, 2021 - Posted by | renewable, UK

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