Expert comment: 'Work still to do' after offshore wind energy investment06 October 2020
University of Reading experts have reacted to the news that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is to announce a £160m investment in offshore wind farms on Tuesday morning (6 October).
A recent Reading study looked at the impact of increasing the number of offshore wind farms on wind power generation in Britain - https://doi.org/10.3390/resources4010155
Read more about the Energy Meteorology Research Group >>>
Dr Hannah Bloomfield, postdoctoral research scientist in renewable energy, said:
"Increasing offshore wind can provide significant benefits. Great Britain's offshore wind conditions are generally more stable than those found onshore, due to there being less impacts of complex terrain, such as mountains or buildings
"The winds offshore are generally higher than onshore, which lead to fewer periods of prolonged low wind power generation and more periods of prolonged high wind power generation when aggregated across the whole country.
"This statement from the Prime Minister is very welcome as renewable energy is a key factor in meeting decarbonisation targets. However, investing in wind power generation alone will not be enough, as the wind power generation may not be available at the times when we most need it.
Dr David Brayshaw, Associate Professor in Climate Science and Energy Meteorology, said:
“Renewable electricity production, which already reached record levels in the UK last year (approximately 37% of the UK’s total or around 121 TWh), is a vital part of the UK’s move towards low-carbon energy mix.
"This announcement is welcome in that it confirms that offshore wind – which is typically associated with significantly higher production rates than its onshore equivalent - can expect to play an increasing role in this continuing transformation.
"There remains, however, much work still to do – particularly in the decarbonisation of heating - in order to reach a secure, low cost, low carbon UK energy system overall.”