A report by the National Grid indicates that there’s too much renewable energy in the United Kingdom that it may result in limiting the amount of green energy it produces during the summer months.
The U.K. has spent a lot of effort over the past few years in reducing its carbon footprint by promoting renewable energy production, wind power in particular. It turns out that Britain’s energy system is having difficulties to cope with the massive expansion in subsidized renewable power due to the boom in wind and solar farms, and more homes and businesses generating their own electricity.
The National Grid has warned that operating the power system at times of low demand may become very challenging. This based on the fact that U.K. energy system struggles to cope with the surplus of subsidized green energy. The National Grid is an organization responsible for balancing Britain’s power supply and demand.
The excess capacity may result in unprecedented emergency orders to wind farms to switch off their turbines. It’s a well-known fact that the power grid can’t handle all the green energy. The supplies and demands of electricity were easier to balance in the past because power plants only generated the amount of power companies paid for.
However, after the introduction of renewables and the boom in solar panels, fueled by subsidies, the U.K. is now producing more energy than the market demands. The switch from fossil fuel and nuclear power to wind and sun to power up the grid is great for the planet and our health. Unfortunately, the infrastructure doesn’t seem ready for all the green electricity.
The grid can’t store all the excess energy that’s flooding the system. The power grid is a delicate system which is finely tuned to keep the voltages it delivers to customers stable. Excess or minimal power can upset the grid’s fragile balance and result in damage to appliances or power outages.
As a result, the U.K. might have to pay wind farms to switch off their turbines to stop generating so much power and avoid the build-up of unused energy. The significant rise in energy efficient homes and businesses powered by their own solar systems has led to the drop in electricity demand during the sunnier summer months. The solar panels directly supply power to houses and businesses or the local electricity grid.
Energy limiting actions will be taken by the grid operators as the national demand is expected to drop so low that it will be outstripped by the supply. Electricity companies will have to pay to wind farms to switch off their operations, this cost will definitely be thrown to the consumers.