Shocking statistics

Think tank: Adam Smith Institute

Author(s): Tim Ambler; Peter Edwards

April 5, 2022

This report from UK think tank the Adam Smith Institute looks at energy security in a net zero world.

The Adam Smith Institute’s latest discussion paper, written by Tim Ambler and Peter Edwards, outlines the challenges of ensuring energy security as the UK moves towards Net Zero carbon by 2050. Recent disruptions to the global energy market have sharpened focus on what steps are necessary to solidify the UK’s future energy security, Distribution failure could, in theory, be mitigated by an independent network linking sub-stations with generators but alternative solutions should be urgently examined, Net Zero by 2050 necessitates our energy supply coming almost entirely from electricity, but there is currently a lack of clarity on estimated future energy requirements and the appropriate mix of electricity sources, Under current plans for the share of UK electricity generated by renewables in 2050, the battery storage investment required is of questionable feasibility, Hydrogen is unlikely to be a main fuel for transport or domestic heating. Its higher wastefulness as a storage medium must be considered when modelling electricity requirements and their overall costs, Time is running out for planning appropriate investment in baseload, whether in the case of nuclear power or counter-renewables with carbon capture and storage, Net carbon zero may require seven times the present electricity generation, The Government needs to estimate with high certainty the greatest, least and most likely generational need in order to adequately plan for a secure future energy supply.