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Weatherwatch: nuclear energy now surplus to needs via The Guardian

Paul Brown

Baseload argument no longer true when large quantities of cheaper renewable energy available

Some myths are hard to kill, especially when they once contained a grain of truth, and keeping outdated ideas alive might save a dying industry. Ministers, journalists and pro-nuclear politicians of all stripes keep repeating the mantra that baseload power is needed to keep the lights on when the wind does not blow and the sun does not shine.

In 2020 this statement is no longer true and excess baseload power is becoming an embarrassment. Nuclear power, so inflexible that it cannot be turned down or off, is surplus to requirements when large quantities of cheaper renewable energy are available. The need to accommodate nuclear power pushes up bills because windfarm owners are being paid to turn off turbines and avoid making unwanted free electricity.


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