If the wind is not blowing (e.g. when a winter anticyclone is covering the UK) and it is night (when solar panels do NOT work) then the base load electricity must come from conventional grid sources such as coal, gas or fission - or else the lights go out.
(Forget 'stored hydro' - far too short a duration within UK to contribute long enough.)
Or are they claiming we can get 100% via cables from Scandinavia ?
I DO believe that the earth's climate is changing but it may well be as NASA said years ago - 'the principal driver is sunspot activity' about which mankind can do nothing.
The 'Anxiety Industry' has grown massively and exposes us to all sorts of scare stories such as 'Rising sea levels drowning Pacific islands' - when the reality is that tectonic plate activity is altering the sea bed levels.
And 'The Barrier Reef is dying' when in reality it IS dying opposite certain river estuaries - BUT growing on the main ocean side.
BTW Sub-forums do not cover "None of the above" in their choice lists.
Best answer by Transparent
I often meet with other members of a local "green" technology group in the South West. There is a wide interpretation of how we perceive ourselves to be green. Some are experts on renewable energy, others promote organically grown products, whilst some are of a green political persuasion.
This mix of concepts makes for some lively debates when we meet up and discuss strategies. So I'm well used to hearing the arguments you put forward. Like you, I tend to want to hear facts.
The science has to be demonstrated to persuade me to take an action which has "green credentials", such as installing solar panels or buying an EV. Those who say "I did coz I can earn a mint from the Feed-In Tariff" don't enthuse me to believe that they have properly assessed the technology!
I believe that OVO's green electricity percentages are calculated over a 24-hour period. After all, you can't inspect electrons on the Nation Grid and decide whether they came from a coal-fired power station or a solar panel. At some times of the day, OVO is therefore buying solar-power which is theoretically being consumed by non-OVO customers. And, as you suggest, there will be other times when OVO customers are using energy from non-green sources. But if you average it out, the advertised fuel-mix percentages can be verified.
Am I correct, Trading Team?
However, I also think you are being too harsh on the amount of green energy produced during the night. Wikipedia lists 109 British hydro-generation stations of over 1MW, of which just four are pumped storage.
On my side of Devon I receive electricity from two hydro-plants (2.6MW & 0.64MW) and a bio-gas plant (3.2MW) which takes all our food waste. All of these operate regardless of sunshine or wind-speed.
I do take your point about pumped-storage. But note that OVO are actively pursuing widespread Li-ion battery storage networks. This forthcoming technology will have an increasingly important part to play in OVO delivering electricity from sustainable sources. This is a key reason why I recently switched suppliers.