Britain could be energy exporter by 2020s

Britain could be a net energy exporter by the 2020s if it meets its renewable and carbon targets. That’s according to a prediction from National Grid, which has forecast three […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Britain could be a net energy exporter by the 2020s if it meets its renewable and carbon targets.

That’s according to a prediction from National Grid, which has forecast three different scenarios about the nation’s future energy demand in a new report.

The report’s ‘Gone Green’ scenario projects how the UK energy market will look if we meet our environmental targets, which include getting 15% of all energy from renewable energy by 2020 and cutting 80% of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The scenario shows energy exports could increase due to a jump in renewable generation and a rise in electricity interconnection capacity.

The report states: “We expect both annual imports and exports to rise from current levels in line with the increase in interconnection capacity, with exports increasing markedly from the latter part of this decade onwards as renewable generation increases so that GB becomes a net exporter to the continent by the early 2020s.”

The prediction follows the East-West electricity link opened last month connecting Ireland and Britain, which is expected to improve security of supply and encourage the growth of renewable energy generation. A report from DECC last week also showed an increase to 9.6% in electricity generated from renewables this year.

However becoming an energy exporter isn’t a given, as is seen in another scenario, which sees ‘Slow Progression’ in hitting UK environmental goals.