Biggest renewables auction accelerates move away from fossil fuels
Report from – GOV.UK
Fourth round of Contracts for Difference scheme secures almost 11GW of clean energy – enough to power around 12 million homes.
A record amount of renewable energy has today (7 July 2022) been secured through the biggest ever round of the UK government’s flagship auction scheme.
The fourth round of the Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme has been the most successful ever, securing almost 11GW across a range of clean technologies, including offshore wind, solar, onshore wind, and – for the first time ever – floating offshore wind and tidal stream – helping to boost British energy security and independence with cleaner, more affordable and diverse energy created in the UK.
CfDs give certainty to project developers to invest in new renewable energy infrastructure by protecting them from volatile wholesale prices. A unique benefit of the CfD scheme is that when wholesale electricity prices are high, as they have been in recent months, generators pay money back into the scheme to reduce the net costs of the scheme to consumers.
The greatest capacity – almost 7GW – has been secured from new offshore wind projects around the coastline of Great Britain, enough to increase the country’s overall capacity built and under construction by 35% and take a significant step towards meeting the government’s 50GW of offshore wind ambition by 2030.
The competitive nature of the scheme has continued to place downward pressure on prices – the per unit (MWh) price of offshore wind secured in this round is almost 70% less than that secured in the first allocation round, in 2015.
Onshore wind and solar energy were both included in a CfD auction for the first time since 2015. Onshore wind secured almost 0.9GW of new capacity, clearing at a per unit price that was more than 45% lower than in the first CfD round in 2015, while solar secured more than 2.2GW.
The fourth round also saw developing technologies tidal stream and floating offshore wind projects successful for the first time. Tidal stream returned a capacity of 41MW and floating offshore wind returned 32MW.
Overall, 93 projects with existing planning permission across England, Scotland and Wales have won contracts through the competitive auction process, which is more than in all 3 previous rounds combined.
This helps solidify the UK’s role as a world-leader in renewable electricity, driving investment in new, future-proof industries, creating skilled jobs and helping reduce emissions across the country. The results also represent significant progress towards achieving ambitions set out in the British Energy Security Strategy, including for the offshore wind sector alone to support around 90,000 high-skilled jobs across Great Britain by the end of the decade.
You can read more on the GOV.UK website – https://www.gov.uk/government/news/biggest-renewables-auction-accelerates-move-away-from-fossil-fuels
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