CultureGeneral Climate change: A step in the right direction as Britain goes without coal power since 1882 Common Sense ContributorsJune 4, 2019 Share Share by Dolline Mukui Since the industrial revolution began, Britain has produced enough power without the use of coal to sustain its self for the whole week. It marks the first coal-free week since the first coal plant opened in 1882 in London. Renewable energy such as wind, solar, bioenergy and hydropower accounted for 25.5% of electricity in 2018, revealed from a government report. The UK government has pledged to stop using coal power by 2025. Last year, coal power only accounted for 6% of power supplies while gas made up the majority of it with 43.9%. National Grid Electricity System Operator director Fintan Sly has said “We believe that by 2025 we will be able to fully operate Great Britain’s electricity system with zero carbon.” Over Easter bank holiday weekend Britain went five days without burning coal, and Mr Slye predicted coal-free runs would become the “new normal”. Great job UK! #CoalFreeWeek – a whole week without using coal to generate power. First time since the 1800s! We need to get rid of coal in the NZ power generation system too! https://t.co/R683uG2JOW— Bevan Jenkins ?? (@BevanJenkins) May 10, 2019 Business and energy secretary, Greg Clark said “Going a week without coal for the first time since the industrial revolution is a huge leap forward in our world-leading efforts to reduce emissions, but we’re not stopping there. “To combat climate change and seize on the opportunities of clean growth, we’re phasing out coal entirely by 2025 and building a cleaner, greener energy system.” Climate change is now at the top of the agenda for the government figuring how to tackle it, whereby other countries are actively seeking ways to cut down and stop greenhouse gasses which are contributing to global warming. Greenhouse gasses is a gas that can trap heat and absorbs infrared radiation which is released from the Earth’s surface and emitting it into back into the Earth’s atmosphere. Belgium, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden have called on European heads of state to cut greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050. A great step towards reducing GHG emissions and better air quality – now we must take the difficult step to completely decarbonise our energy supply #CoalFreeWeek https://t.co/KoUkxn0qbP— Luke Deamer (@LukeDeamer) May 9, 2019 However, not all countries have agreed to this as early this year Germany, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic blocked a European Commission emissions reduction plan at an EU summit. IPBES chairman Robert Watson “The health of the ecosystems on which we and other species depend is deteriorating more rapidly than ever. We are eroding the very foundations of economies, livelihoods, food security, health and quality of life worldwide,” With only 12 years to make a difference, United Nations are also trying to push for more action on climate change, trying to reduce carbon emission to limit global warming to 1.5C According to the UN, the planet is will see 3-3.5C of warming. This could have a devastating impact on various communities in the world. UN secretary-general António Guterres says “We are in a race for our lives, and we are losing. The window of opportunity is closing – we no longer have the luxury of time, and climate delay is almost as dangerous as climate denial.” Greenpeace has also challenged the UK government to phase out diesel and petrol-fuelled cars, as Amsterdam has declared to ban them in 2030. I don’t mind getting an electric car at all as long as the source if it’s energy is renewable otherwise it’s a smokescreen!!— Nicola Newton (@NicolaNewton) May 2, 2019 A spokeswoman for Green peace says “Getting rid of diesel and petrol cars and vans will be crucial both to tackle the climate emergency and to clean up our air, yet ministers have set a phase-out date for sales of new petrol and diesel vehicles that’s more than 20 years away. The government needs to bring that date forward to 2030 while also boosting public transport and investing more in walking and cycling infrastructure.” Climate change is an ongoing debate in every country trying to find ways to reduce their carbon footprint before it’s too late. Dolline is a traveller, journalist and blogger who has palate to try new things. She is a very spontaneous person; you might find her skydiving over the Kenyan coast to kayaking in the Lake District. She can be an over thinker who thinks of every outcome but if she doesn’t she welcomes the change that wasn’t planned. However, she is a very simple person who is up for a good laugh or a book and enjoys living the moment. Dolline is currently a production journalist trainee at ITV Border. Common Sense Contributors Website | + posts Our contributors are friends of The Common Sense Network who write for us from time to time. We love hearing fresh perspectives from people in different spaces. 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