Where is our electricity made ?

  • wizzo227's Avatar
    Level 20
    Are these figures so; more than 80% of electricity right now is fossil gas fired electricity ?

    curl -X GET https://api.carbonintensity.org.uk/regional/regionid/12

    {"data":[{"regionid":12,"dnoregion":"SSE South","shortname":"South England","data":[{"from":"2023-12-01T15:30Z","to":"2023-12-01T16:00Z","intensity":{"forecast":340,"index":"ve ry high"},"generationmix":[{"fuel":"biomass","perc":0},{"fuel":"coal","perc": 1},{"fuel":"imports","perc":14.1},{"fuel":"gas","p erc":80.5},{"fuel":"nuclear","perc":0.4},{"fuel":" other","perc":0},{"fuel":"hydro","perc":0.5},{"fue l":"solar","perc":2},{"fuel":"wind","perc":1.5}]}]}]}
  • 22 Replies

  • retrotecchie's Avatar
    Level 91
    @wizzo227

    No. According to Templar Gridwatch (I have their real time grid tracker on my PC) current UK demand (16:40 GMT) is 44.03GW of which gas is currently providing 57.23%. And of all the fossil fuels used in UK power generation, gas is by far the cleanest.

    Nuclear currently accounts for 10.86%, biomass 6.36%, hydro 6%, wind 2.15% and the balance is mostly imported via the European ICT's from Holland and France. We're currently exporting 0.5GW to Ireland.

    Your data appears to be just SE region which has a higher percentage of gas fired power stations, but you need to look at the overall UK fuel mix rather than just a regional snapshot.
    Last edited by retrotecchie; 01-12-23 at 16:53.
    Don't shoot me, I'm only the piano player. I DON'T work for or on behalf of EON.Next, but am willing to try and help if I can. Not on mains gas, mobile network or mains drainage. House heated almost entirely by baby dragons.
  • geoffers's Avatar
    Level 27
    Are these figures so; more than 80% of electricity right now is fossil gas fired electricity ?
    This Guardian web page seems to have a real-time live link to the current GB power generation at the top - I've viewed it a few times & it seems to be realistic 🤞

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.the...-great-britain
    Last edited by geoffers; 01-12-23 at 19:03.
  • retrotecchie's Avatar
    Level 91
    @geoffers

    The Guardian suggests 59.6% from gas a few minutes ago which is a lot closer to my 57.23% at 16:30 than the far more spurious 'more than 80%' suggested by the OP. The highest ever percentage generated by gas at any time in the UK was about 69% from what I recall. So far this year, the overall energy mix in UK generation has had gas at second place with around 27%. Beaten by wind at just over 31%.

    I'm more interested in grid frequency rather than the current energy mix. Current demand and production by different fuels are just a bonus along with the real-time data I actually need.

    Last edited by retrotecchie; 01-12-23 at 19:16.
  • wizzo227's Avatar
    Level 20
    Thanks. both of you seem to be seeing a bit under 60% gas, a bit over 10% nuclear and 10% imports. That looks like confirmed indication that the feed which I'd looked at is wrong, as it reports negligible nuclear and imports, which might be wrong. Even so, isn't 60% fossil gas fired a bit much ? Shouldn't we turn off even numbered street lights and triple the price of superfast electric vehicle recharge until the renewables start blowing a bit more ? And why on earth did the tidal Swansea Lagoon project, approved in 2015, not get built and then replicated on the east coast where the tidal generation times with 12.5 hour period are staggered a bit from west coast tide ?
  • retrotecchie's Avatar
    Level 91
    Even so, isn't 60% fossil gas fired a bit much ?

    No...I'd like it to be less but transport and agriculture produce twice as much CO2 so I'm not complaining too much. And the 2% from coal is far worse...not just CO2 but all the other toxic chemicals.

    Shouldn't we turn off even numbered street lights and triple the price of superfast electric vehicle recharge until the renewables start blowing a bit more ?

    We have four street lights in our village. Which two do you suggest we switch off? The ones on the road next to a couple of very tricky junctions, or the two by the community centre and old peoples sheltered housing? All four are 12W LED units.

    On the M62 and M6 yesterday, prices advertised for fast charging were 79p per kWh. My electricity costs me around 27p per kWh. So they are already charging triple whack as you suggest. In fact, for the 800 mile round trip I did on Wednesday and Thursday, electricity in an EV at those prices would have cost a lot more than the cost of my diesel and my journey would have taken 3 hours longer.

    Last edited by retrotecchie; 01-12-23 at 19:34.
  • wizzo227's Avatar
    Level 20
    I'm more interested in grid frequency
    I can switch off a small electric heater here within 0.04 seconds of an urgent! national shortage condition of F<49.75Hz but I'm reluctant to set a heater to switch on at national surplus times while F>50.05Hz (about one quarter of the time, in erratic bursts of from seconds to minutes) because no vendor offers a cheaper tariff for mopping up surplus electricity (which would save them money by their needing less spinning reserve gas for prompt response). Also national is the wrong way to decide that sort of thing, in case the surplus generation is from the far end of Scotland or some other far away place. I'd prefer to read a number about every minute, valid at my nearest supergrid substation hub node, of a base price and a by-the-millisecond F dependent price modifier which is nothing much (= don't bother switching interruptible loads) while generation is from far away, and is quite a lot (= do react by switching interruptible loads) while intermittent renewables in my local region such as regional solar are providing a big fraction of the generation nearest to that hub node. I read the price and price modifier by internet perhaps every minute, and those are broadcast common for lots of users around here, and compute a price to pay here from very detailed metering. The electricity company only need to know how much I owe them at the end of the month, plus a few anti-tamper codes to know that my smart home computed it correctly. What is to stop us doing suchlike, in preference to turning up the fossil gas burner power stations ?
  • geoffers's Avatar
    Level 27
    On the M62 and M6 yesterday, prices advertised for fast charging were 79p per kWh. My electricity costs me around 27p per kWh. So they are already charging triple whack as you suggest.
    ... Can't believe why anyone would charge at public charging points (which is why I've got a hybrid) ... My EOn Next Drive charging costs me 9.5p per kWh, so the M6 prices are > 8x what I pay 😲😵‍💫
  • retrotecchie's Avatar
    Level 91
    ... Can't believe why anyone would charge at public charging points (which is why I've got a hybrid) ... My EOn Next Drive charging costs me 9.5p per kWh, so the M6 prices are > 8x what I pay 😲😵‍💫


    I just did an 800 mile round trip in two days. Had I been driving an EV, I might not have had much choice! Fortunately I own a 60mpg + diesel which at 14p per kWh at 42% efficiency works out a lot cheaper than motorway charging! And from empty to full in under two minutes. After all, time is money.

  • WizzyWigg's Avatar
    Level 73
    ... Can't believe why anyone would charge at public charging points (which is why I've got a hybrid) ... My EOn Next Drive charging costs me 9.5p per kWh, so the M6 prices are > 8x what I pay 😲😵‍💫
    Yep why pay 20% VAT at public charging points!!!!!! 🤔 😳