Public backs coal- and gas-power generation

Posted on 19 Oct 2017 and read 458 times
Public backs coal- and gas-power generation A large proportion (50%) of the public would back the construction of new coal- and gas-fired power stations, if it was possible to capture and store any emissions produced, according to a new survey by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (

The survey, which looked at public views on UK electricity generation, found that the public also seem to prioritise security of supply and climate change over price.

Some 35% said that the Government’s first priority should be generating enough power to meet all our domestic and industrial needs, while 32% said the priority should be generating electricity that has the least impact on our climate.

Meanwhile, just 23% said the top priority should be generating electricity that is cheapest for the consumer.

Responding to the findings, Jenifer Baxter — head of energy and environment at the IMechE — said: “Government has abandoned plans to support carbon capture and storage technology in any significant way, despite studies and many pathways showing that this technology is vital to meeting climate-change targets.

Carbon capture and storage offers huge potential to retroactively decarbonise our existing fleet, as well as offering the potential to build new low-carbon power plants fuelled by gas.

These results show that this sort of negative emissions technology also has broad support from the public. If the Government is serious about providing a secure and diverse electricity system, it must focus on reducing energy demand, improving energy efficiency and introducing carbon capture and storage.”

Other findings of the public-perceptions study include the fact that 54% would not support a nuclear power station being located within 10 miles of their home, compared with 52% for a coal-fired power station, 38% for a gas-fired power station, 30% for a biomass power station and 16% for a wind or solar farm.

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