Coal-free fortnight: Landmark record set as UK goes two weeks without coal

The UK has now gone a fortnight without coal, underpinning what has been a landmark month for the country’s energy mix.

The record was confirmed by National Grid ESO at 3:12pm this afternoon, the moment it became clear that the UK would surpass two consecutive weeks without any coal-fired generation whatsoever.


Having only gone a week without coal for the first time since the Industrial Revolution earlier this month, May 2019 has proven to be a halcyon moment for the country’s energy market.

Indeed, National Grid also confirmed that the grid witnessed more coal-free hours in May than in January, February and March combined and, at 624 hours so far, more than in 2017 in total.

Market conditions have also made for a particularly volatile time on the UK’s spot market, with power prices dipping into the negative for a record-breaking nine consecutive hours last weekend, sending balancing costs spiralling to £6.6 million for just one day.

That led one energy firm to describe the events as “extraordinary”, as eleven hours of negative pricing in one 24-hour period sent average wholesale market prices to around -£12/MWh.

Read more: Current News

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