SSE’s last remaining coal-fired power station is due to close in March 2020, reducing the country’s coal plants to just five. The announcement comes as SSE confirmed the plant is losing £40m a year, due to government focusing support on low carbon energy to tackle the intensifying climate crisis.
In September, EDF Energy announced it would be closing its Cottam coal station, after reporting a winter of record-low coal generation.
National Grid confirmed it had been the greenest winter yet for the UK, with milder temperatures dampening energy demand and stronger winds producing more renewable electricity from windfarms. Only 5% of the UK’s electricity demand was from coal-fired power, with carbon intensity dropping to almost half the level of five years ago.
Fintan Slye, head of National Grid’s system operator arm, said:
More renewable power generation and less coal is a trend that is here to stay, and this carbon intensity milestone shows the pace of change in the UK energy industry.
We believe that by 2050, we will be able to fully operate Great Britain’s electricity system with zero carbon.