Other Energy Fuels Used in UK Nov 2008 through Sep 2010

In follow-up to my posting yesterday on Wind energy production, we have generated similar histograms and (first-pass and to be improved) fitted probability distributions for the other fuel-types as published.  This is all part of a step-by-step plan to do some looking into the future of future changes in fuel type mixes.

Here is the overall summary of means, and the figures below show the histograms and fitted probability distributions.

The first is Combined Cycle Gas Turbines (CCGT), producing on average 17 GW, as shown below.

Coal is another “biggie” , producing on average 11.6 GW.  It has an intersting “double peak” centered around 3 GW and another  around 14 GW.

Nuclear energy produced on average 6.9 GW, and again there is an interesting double peak, one centred between 5-6 GT, and another between 7 and 8 GW.

Electricit from hydroelectric sources relatively small (about the same as current Wind production) at 0.3 GW:

The numbers for pumped storage are interesting as they show both positive and negative numbers.  I’m presuming that positive are output generation and negative is the power to pump the water into the reservoirs since this signage would be the same as other other data.  The mean is a negative -0.1 GW which presumably is an indicator of the next cost of pump storage and how it is not a power source as sometimes suggested:

The other fuel sources for which there is data are relatively insignificant and are included here for completeness

  • Oil 0.06 GW
  • Open Cycle Gas Turbine 0.004 GW

Another two interesting graphs show the pattern of power in/out of Ireland (-0.2 GT) and France (next):

Here is France (0.4 GW)

Finally, for completeness, here is the results for Wind as reported yesterday (0.4 GW):


7 Responses to Other Energy Fuels Used in UK Nov 2008 through Sep 2010

  1. martinbrumby says:

    Just as a reality (?) check, other prognoses for future energy requirements / supply are to be found at http://www.raeng.org.uk/news/publications/list/reports/Generating_the_future_report.pdf
    and at

    The first of these (from the Royal Academy of Engineering) is written by a group of power engineering experts who nevertheless believe Global Warming is a problem. Just check out what they predict will be required to achieve 80% CO2 reduction, with nuclear. And be awe struck.

    Being charitable, the Royal Academy’s report is half mad.

    Zero Carbon 2030 on the other hand……

    Judge for yourself.

    A foreword by Sir John Houghton (yes, it is he!) sets the tone. Nice one, Sir John!

    • fujirobin says:

      Why do you say that the RAE report is half mad? and which half?

      • martinbrumby says:

        What I mean is that they approach the problem in a conscienscious, sensible, competent manner (as you would expect from a bunch of engineers – but I must declare an interest there). This is the sane bit.

        But the conclusions they reach are jaw dropping and they never look again at their initial premise (that there is significant Global Warming and that this is a Problem) and carry out a reality check.

        That’s mad.

        And I have to admit that some of the engineers have active ties to BigWind which I consider to be an egregious and bare faced scam.

        But the ZeroCarbon 2030 crowd (with no nuclear) are away with the fairies. Where are the men in white coats when you really need ’em?

  2. fujirobin says:

    You need to correlate generation type by baseload (24×7), variable (dependent on time of day) and peak demand. The different generators play different roles. Pumped Storage for instance only comes into play around the peaks. Nuclear is 24×7.

    The whole thing is determined by market forces…. AIUI baseload nuclear and some coal power is generally on longterm contracts – cheap. As prices are higher at peak demand times the more expensive options come into play. Wind, whatever time it is generated, displaces the most expensive option at that time as the system has to take it.

    • martinbrumby says:

      “The whole thing is determined by market forces”….

      Not at all, when it comes to “renewables”. The ROCs (and very active political and media support) are as big a distorting factor in a “free market” as it is possible to imagine.

      Without this, it is hard to imagine any of the energy companies entertaining wind at all.

      • fujirobin says:

        Its only the same game as was played with supporting the nuclear industry via the NFFO (followed by further multi-billion bailouts). Have you read the link below?

  3. fujirobin says:

    Some info on the economics of wind (possibly contentious – I don’t know) is here:


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