In 2017/18 RISC gave presentations at the SEAOCC and APPEA conferences indicating that natural gas was the natural partner to renewable energy, and would play a crucial swing producer role in power generation.
These presentations can be viewed here:
APPEA 2018 – Repositioning gas in the energy mix
SEAAOC 2017 – The role of natural gas in a low emissions future
Recent data from the UK shows just how important gas is as a dispatchable source of power and back-up to the renewable energy supply sources.
Image: Electricity generated, by fuel
Source: UK Government Energy Trends – March 2021
Key takeaways from the report:
- In 2020 the UK produced more electricity from renewables than from fossil fuels (and went “coal free” for a couple of months in the summer).
- However, in Q1 2021 renewable electricity production was 16% LOWER than the same period in 2020 even though there had been capacity increases over the year. This was because there was less wind and sun in 2021 than in 2020.
- In Q1 2021 Nuclear generation was also down by 12% compared to the same period in 2020 due to maintenance programs.
- As a result in Q1 2021 generation from gas was up by 19% compared to 2020 to compensate for the lower production from renewables and nuclear.