Coal power switched off in UK for longest period since 19th century

The UK ran without coal power for several days this week, creating a new record.

Coal power has been a prominent source for the British people since the time of the industrial revolution, but all that could change.

It was only last year that the UK saw its first coal-free day, but a recent spell of warm weather reduced the demand, allowing alternative fuel sources to take over.

According to The Guardian;

That milestone in turn was smashed on Monday afternoon and the UK passed the 72-hour mark at 10am on Tuesday. The coal-free run came to an end after 76 hours.

Without the fossil fuel, nearly a third of Britain’s electricity was supplied by gas, followed by windfarms and nuclear on around a quarter each.

The rest came from biomass burned at Drax power station in North Yorkshire, imports from France and the Netherlands, and solar power. Drax said it expected to go without coal on Tuesday.”

Several new regulatory bodies have been set up to monitor the use of coal power in the UK, including a governmental plan to get rid of the harmful fuel source.

A carbon tax, the cheaper price of gas and the rise of renewables have all hit coal operators. The government has set a deadline of October 2025 for phasing out coal entirely.

Two coal plant owners have said they will shut this year, which will leave the UK with six coal power stations including Drax, which has hinted it will cease burning coal before the 2025 target.”

Colin J McCracken
Colin J McCracken

Director and Executive Editor

Colin J McCracken is an Irish editor and writer of both fiction and journalism. Coming from a background in education and film, his passions are split between the environmental and the entertaining. Constantly striving for a more sustainable existence and trying to balance it while simultaneously buying too many books.