As highlighted in a previous article, the Fiddlers Ferry and Aberthaw B coal-fired power plants were scheduled to close at the end of Q1 2020. In the last few days, the respective operators of each plant have confirmed their closure, as planned. This is a further step toward the UK completing its shift away from coal, towards a combination of renewables and natural gas.
- For SSE, operator of Fiddlers Ferry (1.5GW) in Warrington, Cheshire, this significantly marks the termination of coal-fired power in the UK. As the UK’s leading generator of renewable energy, they have committed to trebling this output by 2030. They will continue to back up this source and meet energy demand with super-efficient gas-fired plants, which they are looking to decarbonise through emerging carbon capture and hydrogen technology.
- For RWE, operator of Aberthaw B (1.5GW) in Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, this similarly marks the termination of coal-fired power generation in the UK. The rest of their portfolio is now similarly focused on wind and gas, with the exception of a single biomass cogeneration plant in Scotland. With the aim of becoming carbon neutral by 2040, they are investing massively in expanding renewables and storage technologies, whilst supporting a secure energy supply with their flexible power plant fleet.
Switching from coal to a combination of gas and renewables has already delivered an emissions reduction of more than 60% in the energy supply sector since 1990 (278 to 105MtCO2e).