Offshore Renewable Energy – Good and Bad News

The good news is that the Offshore Valuation Group has published the first full economic valuation of the UK’s offshore renewable resource.

Offshore Wind Turbines

The study was part-funded by the Committee on Climate Change – who supply independent advice to the government on building a low-carbon economy – and they were one of a range of commissioning organisations  (which included the UK, Scottish and Welsh governments plus eight energy companies)  of the study.

The report finds that using just one third of the UK’s wind, wave and tidal resource could:

  • unlock the electricity equivalent of 1 billion barrels of oil a year (matching North Sea oil and gas production);
  • give CO2 reductions of 1.1 billion tonnes by 2050; and
  • create 145,000 new UK jobs.

The study, The offshore valuation: a valuation of the UK’s offshore renewable energy resource, is available for download as an executive report and a full report.

The bad news is such groups still do not recognise that:

  • we need a zero carbon, rather than a low-carbon, economy;
  • we need to reach zero carbon as soon as possible, certainly way before 2050;
  • energy efficiency and all available methods of renewable energy are required as a matter of urgency for reasons additional to climate change (e.g. health, biodiversity);
  • economic growth is unsustainable.

David M. Davison

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