E.ON UK wants to replace two existing coal-fired units at a power station in Kent with two cleaner units. This one billion pounds investment would be the first new coal-fired power station capacity to be built in the UK for 24 years. Unsurprisingly, there is a bit of hoo-hah about whether the Government should give this development the thumbs up. I'm in two minds about this. Its one of these 'energy' issues where these seems to be an argument for both sides. (Unfortunately I can't find the story in the Telegraph Online to provide the link. Its in today's edition)
The case for is that the new units would be far more efficient than conventional coal-fired power stations, and would reduce the number of new nuclear power stations that will be built and reduce the number of landscapes that will be destroyed by wind turbines. The case against is that it would still be a significant polluter which would undermine the UK Government's commitment to reduce Carbon Dioxide emissions, notwithstanding its greater efficiency
The debate about the shape of the UK's future energy supply network is going to be a dominating political issue throughout 2008, driven principally by the Government's imminent decision to give the green light to new nuclear power generating capacity. Hopefully, in a year's time, we will have enough information to make a judgement about whether environmentalists should support or oppose E.ON UK's proposal.