Note – this article was originally published on www.charleyrattan.com
Renewable energy often uses ‘fuel’ which is essentially free. This is particularly the case for wind power which utilises abundant air flows that surround us as well as for marine generation which utilises the motion of the waves and the power of the tides in the sea. A speaker at a UK energy outlook seminar recently revealed bluntly that prices of electricity will continue to rise – then who will be the winners and who will be the losers in a rapidly changing energy landscape? This article details three examples of each:
1) The biggest winners will be the forward-thinking individuals and organisations who embraced the change; they may have bought a green contract (Power Purchase Agreement – PPA) or they may even be ‘prosumers’ generating their own electricity and selling it to the grid at the most opportune time. These early adopters who took advantage of the support offered to a nascent industry took the risk and those who survived, are winners.
2) Those that studied their overall energy usage and looked for efficiencies; sought best deals through switching suppliers are also winners; they were proactive and will reap the rewards.
3) The supply chain and associated host communities of renewable developments. They took the risk early and are now receiving community and employment benefits. They range from turbine manufacturers to cable suppliers and harbour communities and hinterlands – as evidenced in places such as Humberside and Lowestoft.
Of the ‘losers’ several historically crucial industries come to mind:
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