Britain's energy system is already capable of taking a large amount of wind power, according to a new report commissioned by Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, RSPB and WWF. The report shows that there is no technical reason why a significant amount of energy generated by wind cannot be used to supply the National Grid. Report Author David Milborrow, an energy expert with 30 years' experience in the field, said: "Utilities worldwide generally agree there is no fundamental technical reason why high proportions of wind cannot be assimilated without the lights going out." Key findings include: � wind power does not need large amounts of extra conventional � fossil, nuclear or gas � energy backup to stop the lights going out � while the instant loss of a large conventional power station is a real risk, it is extremely unlikely that the same amount of wind will disappear instantaneously; � the National Grid is more than able to manage the variable input created by wind power, as it is already designed to manage fluctuations in demand and supply � variations in wind power are considerably less than variations in consumer demand, which can vary on an hourly basis according to the weather, rush hour and even TV scheduling; and � there are no significant costs associated with managing variability � If the UK meets its renewable energy targets and within this provides 32 per cent of our electricity from wind by 2020, it will only add �2 to every �100 spent by consumers. Robin Webster, Senior Climate Campaigner at Friends of the Earth, said: "The claim that renewable power cannot deliver a big portion of our energy needs is dead and buried. The Government needs to deliver a genuine shift in energy policy in its upcoming Renewable Energy Strategy. We're still right at the bottom of the renewable energy league table in Europe and the energy system in Britain is skewed against renewable power."


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