By Paul Homewood
h/t Dave Ward
In my two decades working in the energy industry we have faced seemingly impossible choices.
Do we cut carbon emissions – or do we keep the lights on and the bills affordable? Do we build new infrastructure cheaply – or do we prioritise UK jobs and supply chains?
You could be forgiven for thinking these choices are now starker than ever.
But only by building more of our own clean energy infrastructure here in Britain can we protect ourselves from the next energy crisis.
Let me give an example.
We recently finalised arrangements for the third phase of building at Dogger Bank, the world’s largest offshore wind farm, which we’re constructing off the north-east coast of England.
Each of 190 turbines will be almost as tall as the Shard. Just one turn of its giant blades will be enough to power a home with clean electricity for more than two days. Sounds expensive? You might be surprised.
Like most new low-carbon generation being built, Dogger Bank has a ‘contract for difference’ (CfD).
This means it is paid a fixed price for its output, regardless of the wholesale price at the time. When the wholesale price is lower than this ‘strike price’, it receives a top-up payment to bridge the gap.
When the wholesale price is higher, as it is now, the generator pays the money back into the pot, which should result in bills being lower than otherwise through a reduced price cap and lower tariffs.
In recent months, Dogger Bank’s strike price has been under £50 per megawatt hour compared with a wholesale price north of £200.
What he does not tell you is that those CfDs can be torn up at any time by SSE, who can then take advantage of higher market prices. The penalty for doing so is miniscule.
Will Mr Phillips-Davies give a categorical assurance that SSE will do no such thing?
SSE currently own two operational offshore wind farms:
Beatrice is paid £164.73/MWh, three times the historical market price:
Meanwhile Greater Gabbard is subsidised via ROCs to the tune of £100/MWh, which they receive on top of the income from sales of electricity. With a wholesale price of £200.MWh, SSE are getting an obscene £300/MWh for every unit of electricity they sell.
Funny how Mr Phillips-Davies forgot to mention these inconvenient facts!
via NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT
January 19, 2022 at 08:57AM