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Discussion Starter #1
With the use of fossil fuels being phased out and the change over to electric, will fracking for more gas be needed? Gas powered power stations together with neuclear account to over half of our electricity but the future of of nuclear plants is uncertain. So will future electric supply be solar and wind or will we rely on importing most of it?
 

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Yes, Importing the gas that is. Because you can’t build enough wind farms around UK coasts, or solar panels on every hectare of food production land, to meet electricity demand on a cloudy day when there is not enough wind. Especially not when all those electric cars need to be charged.

By 2040 the National Grid will need to have increased overall generating capacity between 3 and 4 fold to meet the demand from EV cars. If the UK goes 100% EV. Source: The Independent, Jan 2020.

Every single gas (fossil fuel) power station will still be needed to meet the increased demand from EVs, even when wind and solar are on full stream. 2019 could possibly be the last year when several days summer demand could be met from wind and solar alone.

New nuclear isn’t happening. Takes 30 years to build even if they were being built. Old nuclear is being decommissioned. Therefore you will need to either:
  • Continue importing gas in liquid form from Middle East into Milford Haven. Highly vulnerable to political changes and wars. E.G. stop sending fighter aircraft to Saudi. They stop sending their gas to you.
  • Continue importing gas from Russia (“unlimited supplies”). Which can be cut off any time Putin wants to strangle European economies.
  • North Sea only has oil left now.
  • Find some home grown gas by fracking. So you can still keep the lights on and those EVs charged when political upheaval has cut off your gas supplies from those imports.
Possibly combination of all three?
Result - we are stuck between a rock and a hard place. And gradually getting squeezed.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
A cloudy day with no wind and ev points gone the way of vandalised telephone boxes sounds about right.
 

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During storm Ciara there were warnings of possible power cuts. So the perfect storm would be power cuts, flooding and emergency services with flat batteries.
 

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A cloudy day with no wind and ev points gone the way of vandalised telephone boxes sounds about right.
Entirely plausible scenario:
You are half way through your 200 mile day time journey in your EV, at 10:00 a.m. and need to stop for a charge. Only to find all the EV charge points have been disconnected. Because there isn’t enough capacity in the Grid to power those AND keep the lights on and industry running. Gas power stations can’t be fired up to meet demand because gas supplies are cut off due to political problems. Wind and solar can only just keep up with demand for lights and industry.
Result - you have to wait till midnight until grid demand tails off enough to allow your EV charge point to come back online. It’s that simple.

Bring back nuclear, all is forgiven? Just don’t build them to the same design as Chernobyl. Or put them where a tsunami can knock out the cooling systems. We don’t need the weapons grade plutonium that the 1960s Magnox reactors were designed and operated to produce. We do need the clean power.
 

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A Rolls Royce led consortium has plans for development of small modular reactors that would be pre-fabricated in factories to reduce costs and installing ten to fifteen in sites in Cumbria and Wales. Not all nuclear has to be on the scale and cost of Hinkley Point.
 

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Entirely plausible scenario:
You are half way through your 200 mile day time journey in your EV, at 10:00 a.m. and need to stop for a charge. Only to find all the EV charge points have been disconnected. Because there isn’t enough capacity in the Grid to power those AND keep the lights on and industry running
Many a true word!

Several years ago there was an imminent danger of Heathrow Airport being flooded, it was avoided by flooding a large industrial estate down the road.
 

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Or more likely the half dozen or so at the motorway service station are in use with a 50 car queue waiting to use them
 

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A Rolls Royce led consortium has plans for development of small modular reactors that would be pre-fabricated in factories to reduce costs and installing ten to fifteen in sites in Cumbria and Wales. Not all nuclear has to be on the scale and cost of Hinkley Point.
One of the proposed places being the redundant nuclear power station at Trawsfynydd north of here.
 
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