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The UK may close all of its 12 coal-fired power plants by 2023, changing the nature of the business electricity generation. How could this affect SME bills?
As attitudes towards high carbon emissions generation through coal harden, the UK is considering ending all of its coal-fired power generation. This would merely be an acceleration of a movement away from coal – Cockenzie Power Station was the latest to be demolished, Scottish Power’s Longannet plant, SSE’s Ferrybridge, and Eggborough Power’s stations are all due to close next year, while the mighty Drax has been shifting towards biomass generation. Coal now makes up less than a third of business electricity supply.
As Europe’s second-biggest polluter, the UK may make an announcement before 30 November, when UN climate talks start in Paris, according to an unnamed official quoted in media sources but originally revealed by the The Times newspaper. Plants fitted with equipment to capture and store carbon emissions will apparently be exempt from closure.
If the plan goes ahead, generators such as Drax Group, EON and RWE must decide whether to convert their plants to biomass or fit expensive carbon-capture equipment.
According to the National Grid’s most recent FES report, a UK preference for green energy policies would see coal generation steadily fall to zero by 2030. Few coal power stations would be fitted with carbon capture.
Other forms of fossil fuel generation will also be required to ensure adequate supplies of commercial electricity; the National Grid has reported that the winter electricity surplus is modest at best.
Gas is increasingly seen as the ‘bridge’ to a low carbon future, particularly as developments such as fracking have made for the cheapest business gas prices for quite some time. But commercial gas prices are notoriously unpredictable, reacting to everything from Russian military action to sanctions on Iran.
The proposed end to coal power would have positive environmental effects but could put upward pressure on business electricity tariffs. Those SMEs wanting to get a good deal on business electricity prices may want to compare business electricity suppliers sooner rather than later.
Even those locked into a long contract could find that paying the exit fees still leaves them significant savings. And doing this comparison doesn’t have to be onerous: just 20 minutes is enough for us to quickly compare business electricity suppliers and switch you to a new deal (with us taking care of the paperwork). Give us a call on 0330 0100 251 (or request a call back using our form).
Our dedicated page has lots more information about business electricity
"Very easy. Bea Luseni very efficient & knowledgeable."This review was posted by Alan Duffy on the 31st of March 2017
Super helpful and easy to work with
"Recommend this company in a heartbeat - Nicole Borneuf was super easy to talk to, was not pushy in the slightest, very helpful and replied with all my questions very professionally and did all she could to help. I had to deal with a few companies to sort my business energy out, all but Nicole were too pushy for my liking and I refused to follow through with them. Thank Nicole - you are a credit to your company, thank you for making the stressful energy change so easy."This review was posted by Mia Drew on the 29th of March 2017
An Extremely Competent Company
"Switch my business has not only helped my SME secure a good energy deal for the second year running but Jessica swiftly found a alternative supplier for me when I was let down on the day of switching by the new contractual provider I had chosen some 4 months previously. Being suddenly out of contract and without provider is everyone's energy nightmare. Greatest thanks."This review was posted by S McMillan on the 29th of March 2017
Helpful, friendly and we saved lots of money!
"Jessica Purnell was helpful and friendly, she made the whole process easy and simple AND we saved lots of money thanks Jess"This review was posted by Melanie Baker on the 23rd of March 2017
Quick & Easy
"Kabibi was very helpful and the whole process was very efficient. The one small reservation I had was that I was phoned up by Kabibi almost immediately having received my online quote - which wasn't enough time for me to finish reading the quotes! Fortunately she was able to assist me in a greater savings on both Gas & Electricity, and so as long as the switchover is seamless I will remain very happy with the service."This review was posted by Amanda Brown on the 21st of March 2017