Is there a future for UK power generation without fossil fuels.


It has been said that the world's only truly inexhaustible energy sources are solar and nuclear. This is a key factor directing attention towards the day when fossil fuels will have been eliminated for all practical purposes from the electrical generation scene. Such a statement raises many issues but, in the end, a balance has to be struck so that environmental, social and commercial factors are optimised in an acceptable manner. The nuclear debate will doubtless continue until technological advances permit effective decoupling of power generation and weapons manufacture. However, one thing is virtually certain and that is that world and UK electrical demands will increase at the expense of other energy forms. Whilst it is true that solar and nuclear sources are virtually inexhaustible there are practical difficulties, mainly concerned with management and control of a generation mix to which the suppliers of commercial electricity are at present unaccustomed. Storage on a greatly increased scale will be required and nuclear power plants may have to be operated at lower load factors. It is concluded that there is a future for electricity generation in the UK without fossil fuels. (U.K.). Price,-I.C.; Starr,-M.R.