The future of power generation questioned

For the annual review edition we asked readers what they were hoping for and fearing for the year ahead in regards to energy. We also asked them to give us an idea of where they thought the industry would be a year from now.

The future of power generation is going to need a combination of renewable energy sources as well as natural gas. This will provide us with more cost effective and greener energy. The immediate future for meeting the world’s energy requirements will be a combination of many types of energy. What we are going to see though is an increasing reliance on energy production methods such as wind and solar. These sources do not work all the time however so a viable alternative is natural gas. This is one of the cheapest ways to produce energy.

Natural gas is the cleanest of the fossil fuels. General Electric (GE) have invested half a billion dollars into natural gas technology and see it as a method for supplementing an energy system that finds much of its energy from renewable sources.

In Turkey, GE are working on a facility that combines the benefits of natural gas and renewable energy production. GE sees these two energy forms, not as competitors, but as two forms of energy that are capable of working together. The Turkey facility is a manifestation of this goal.

The combination of renewable energy with natural gas allows a flexible way to produce power. If needed, the power output of a station can be increased easily. It is also a very efficient way of producing energy. GE has stated that this combination is what they believe to be, “the future of power generation.”

The UK has agreed to be legally bound by targets to reduce emissions, this is going to put a strain on the power network and is going to require well thought out investment. In order to meet these targets the government will need to start working on a smarter grid that will more efficiently utilise renewable energy.

Many people have commented on the issue of renewable energy that the government needs to have more ambitious time scales if they are to accomplish these reduced emissions. Others have commented that if they UK does not put more money into the sector then the country will stop being a leader in renewable energies.

In today’s economic and political climate it seems that renewable energy is having to take a back seat while the government work on repairing the economy and ensuring increased global politically stability. Politicians need to be turned back onto the subject of energy if they are to reduce carbon emissions in the UK.