Is this the beginning of the end for Coal?

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Will this be a coal-free power generation?

Coal-fired plants have not contributed to electricity grid since the 10th of April 2020.

The UK has now managed without coal-fired power generation for its longest period since the Industrial Revolution, breaking the existing record of 18 consecutive days.

Our energy system has not used coal-fired plants for more than 438 hours, according to National Grid data, which is the longest uninterrupted period since 1882.

The lock down has also caused the UK’s electricity demand to fall to record lows because schools, shops, factories and restaurants have closed.

The amazing 18-day period has broken the UK’s previous record, because of a collapse in demand for electricity during the Coronavirus lock down and because of greater use of solar power.

This has produced a new solar power record on 20 April after solar farms generated more than 9.6GW of electricity for the first time.

And this month National Grid said it may need to turn renewable plants off in order to avoid overloading the electricity grid!

The new coal-free record comes almost three years (21 April 2017) after the grid first ran without coal power for 24 hours for the first time since 1882.

Four of the UK’s coal power plants have shut in advance of a government ban on coal generation from 2025.

With coal making up only 2.1% of the country’s total power mix last year, this is a dramatic fall from almost a quarter just four years ago.

The percentage of renewable electricity in the UK in 2018 was 33% and in 2019 it rose to 37.4%.


This is all very good news for renewable energy and may it continue.




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