Global environmental organisation Greenpeace has estimated that the UK could generate more than 80% of its electricity from wind, solar and tidal power within the next 15 years.
In the study – 2030 Energy Scenario Report – researchers at Greenpeace studied hourly weather data for 11 years in an attempt to dismiss the argument that lights couldn’t be kept on if the switch to renewable energy is made.
Dr Doug Parr, chief scientist at Greenpeace, said the new research provides concrete evidence that it is possible to keep power systems working while also decarbonising the electricity system and that smart energy technology would be a key factor in making it a reality, reports International Business Times.
Parr went on to state that using smart energy technology and reducing the demand for power is what will help the UK to make the switch to renewable forms of energy.
The report looked at how smart meters, batteries and demand-side management can be used to reduce the demand for extra gas power stations.
For example, smart fridges could turn down during a dark evening in winter, or grid-scale batteries could store excess renewable energy to be used if the wind power is lower on a particular day.
The news builds on recent comments made by the CEO of National Grid Steve Holliday that large power stations for base load was “outdated”.
However, the UK’s Conservative government is continuing with plans to cut subsidies for wind and solar schemes on the grounds of cost.
Last week the UK dropped out of the top ten of the Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index report, which ranks 40 countries based on their renewable energy investment and deployment.
It is the first time that the UK has not been included in the top ten countries since the index was launched by EY 12 years ago.