Tue. Aug 9th, 2022

Bold measures to increase long-term energy independence, security, and prosperity will see the production of cleaner, more affordable energy in Great Britain. By 2030, it is anticipated that 95 percent of Great Britain’s electricity would be zero carbon. Bold new commitments have been made to boost clean energy and hasten deployment. July 7, 2022, saw the largest round of the UK government’s renowned auction process, which secured a record share of renewable energy.

The 4th phase of the Contracts for Difference (CfD) program was the most successful ever, securing approximately 11 GW across a variety of clean technologies, spanning onshore wind, offshore wind, solar, and – for the first moment ever – tidal stream and floating offshore wind. This helps to increase British energy security and stability by generating cleaner, cheaper, and more diverse energy in the UK.

CfDs provide project developers with security by shielding them from erratic wholesale prices and encouraging them to make significant investments in renewable energy infrastructure. When wholesale energy costs are rising, as they have been recent, generators pay cash back into the CfD scheme to lower the net costs of the plan to customers. This is a unique advantage of the CfD scheme.

The largest capacity – almost 7GW – has been obtained from new offshore wind initiatives off the coast of Great Britain, increasing the nation’s total constructed and under construction capacity by 35% and putting the country significantly closer to achieving the government’s goal of 50GW of offshore wind by 2030.

Price reductions have been prompted by the scheme’s competitive character; the price of offshore wind per unit (MWh) achieved in this allocation round is over 70% lower than that obtained during the first allocation phase, in 2015.

For the first time since 2015, CfD auctions featured both solar energy and onshore wind. In comparison to the first CfD round in 2015, onshore wind obtained nearly 0.9GW of additional capacity, clearing at a price per unit that was more than 45 percent cheaper. Solar obtained more than 2.2GW.

Floating offshore wind and Tidal stream projects both achieved their first successes in the fourth round of competition. While floating offshore wind only produced 32MW, tidal stream produced 41MW. There have been more contracts awarded via the competitive auction procedure overall than in the previous three rounds combined, with 93 projects with the current planning authority in England, Scotland, and Wales receiving contracts.

This reinforces the UK’s position as a global leader in renewable electricity, spurring investment in fresh, future-proof businesses, generating skilled employment, and assisting in the nation’s effort to lower emissions. The outcomes also reflect a big step forward in fulfilling the goals outlined in the British Energy Security Strategy, which include the requirement that by the end of the decade, the offshore wind industry alone will sustain almost 90,000 high-skilled employment throughout Great Britain.

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