AtkinsRealis forecasts negative consequences if UK government does not accelerate energy build rate. Image: Flickr Sheila Sund.
AtkinsRealis forecasts negative consequences if UK government does not accelerate energy build rate. Image: Flickr Sheila Sund.

Research published by engineering company AtkinsRéalis has forecast negative consequences if the UK’s annual energy build rate does not increase.

In 2019, AtkinsRéalis predicted a necessary build rate of 10.5GW per year to achieve the UK government’s goal of net zero electricity by 2050.

Since that point, however, the government updated its net zero power goalpost, moving it to 2035, so AtkinsRéalis updated its study in accordance.

The 2022 version of the research, now named Countdown to 2035, calculated the UK needed to build 14GW per year to reach net zero power by 2035, which has now jumped to 15.5GW per year in its January 2024 publication.

In contrast, the highest ever recorded build rate in the UK was 6.5GW in 2017, a number which has since fallen quite significantly, with 2022 seeing only 4.5GW connected to the national electricity grid.

AtkinsRéalis predicts that if the UK increases the build rate by 10% each year, it will need to be connecting 40GW per year by 2035.

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