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Renewable energy: vision or mirage?

— As renewable energy sources produce power intermittently, they cannot replace gas, coal and nuclear generation, even with further development.

— Solar and wind energy have no prospect of becoming economically competitive in an unrigged market. Government intervention will lead to higher energy costs and jeopardize energy security.

— Increased investment in wind turbines will do little to reduce carbon emissions and fossil fuel consumption.

The report ‘Renewable Energy: Vision or Mirage?’, released today by the Adam Smith Institute and Scientific Alliance, reveals that the government’s focus on renewable energy sources is misguided. The UK’s plans for renewables are unrealistic, and these technologies cannot provide the secure energy supply the country needs. Present policies will lead to an energy crisis by the middle of this decade. The key points from the report are detailed below:

Wind turbines are not the solution

Solar power

It is difficult not to conclude that the official enthusiasm for renewables has more to do with the power of the green lobby than economics and energy security. Martin Livermore, joint author of the report, adds:

“For too long, we have been told that heavy investment in uneconomic renewable energy was not only necessary but would provide a secure future electricity supply. The facts actually show that current renewables technologies are incapable of making a major contribution to energy security and – despite claims to the contrary – have only limited potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.”

“Consumers have a right to expect government to place high priority on a secure, affordable energy supply. It seems that ministers have not yet realised the need to invest in more nuclear and gas generating capacity if the electorate is not to be badly let down.”

Download original document: “Renewable energy: vision or mirage? [1]