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Engineer warns DECC to improve green balance

Engineering consultant, Hugh Sharman has warned that Britain’s ageing fleet of gas-powered plants will not be able to cope with the task of rapidly “balancing” the country’s electricity supply when wind levels are low, The Independent has reported.

Hugh Sharman is an engineering consultant who worked on a government-commissioned, but unpublished, report looking at how to keep the lights on in the face of soaring renewable energy use.

Mr Sharman is involved in a project to develop a new flexible gas-fired power plant but insisted his advocacy of the technology is unconnected to his commercial interests.

Rather, he said, his research helped him identify the opportunity. Nor was he the only author of the report presented to the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) last year, which was commissioned by the government and carried out by engineering consultant Mott MacDonald.

A DECC spokesperson told The Independent: “The lights will not go out. National Grid already has reserve capacity in place to ensure the system can balance and has recently announced it will procure more capacity.”

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