Since the pandemic has struck, electricity demands have plummeted in great Britain. In response to the deflating demand, the National Grid took loads off the two plants. Turns out, on Wednesday, the whole nation went fully on sustainable electricity for two-full months!
Britain’s majority of electricity is generated from sustainable means. However, the nation has four coal-powered plants in operation.
Owing to the lockdown, and the plummeting power demands, the four coal plants were among the first to be shut off by the National grid, BBC reports.
Britain switched off the last coal grid in April. The nation was scheduled to have crossed a milestone for going two-full months without coal-derived electricity on Wednesday.
Coal continues to dominate the world energy system, with 40% of the global energy derived from coal. At the same time, 40% of the world’s carbon emission is also a contribution of coal-derived energy generation. In Britan, a decade ago, 40% of the nation’s energy demand was met by coal.
By going two-full months without coal, Britain breaks its former record of 18 days, 6 hours and 10 mins of coal-free tenure in last year’s June. Last year, the nation noted the coal-free power was on par with its pre-industrial revolution days.
“It’s the first time since the Industrial Revolution that more electricity has been produced from zero and low-carbon sources rather than fossil fuels. It’s tremendously exciting because it’s such a tipping point,” CEO of National Grid that powers Britain was quoted as saying in 2019.
According to reports, the country will shut off the remaining coal plants within five years. Now Britain is significantly powered by sustainable electricity as compared to just 3% in the past decade.
“So far this year renewables have generated more electricity than fossil fuels and that’s never happened before”, Dr. Simon Evans of environmental journal Carbon brief told BBC.
Coal powered the steam engine that was the fulcrum of the Industrial Revolution, which in turn changed the whole world. Such is the turn of events, that the same coal is now set to become history, again. Possibly? For the better?
(Image for representative purpose only)