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How much power can renewables deliver?

According to the government's Performance & Innovation Unit, offshore wind has potential to provide more than 100TWh/year, photovoltaics over 200TWh/year, and wave and tidal power 700TWh/year. UK electricity use currently stands at 360TWh/year.

Renewables' main challenge is matching the price of conventional generating technology - they must come in at close to 2p per kWh to compete. While all are relatively expensive at present, by 2020 it is reckoned prices will have fallen to l1.5p-2.5p/kWh for onshore wind l2p-3p/kWh for offshore wind l4p-8p/kWh for wave and tidal l2.5p-4p/kWh for biomass and energy crops l10p-16p/kWh for photovoltaics However, escalations in the climate change levy, which penalises use of energy generated from fossil fuels, and decreasing supply of power from conventional sources as old nuclear and coal fired stations are decommissioned, will steadily drive up wholesale energy prices.

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