|Grid is OK; but you could still avoid CO2 emissions by postponing running big appliances such as dishwashers or washing machines|
(Over a longer period, the current status is GREEN.)
You might have saved as much as 47% carbon emissions by choosing the best time to run your washing and other major loads.
Latest data is from Thu Dec 07 19:35:00 UTC 2023. This page should be updated every few minutes: use your browser's refresh/reload button if you need to check again.
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This free service is in BETA and may be unavailable or withdrawn at any time and is provided "as-is" with no warranties of any kind.
This page shows the current "carbon intensity" of the GB National Grid (ie the England/Scotland/Wales portions of the UK electricity grid) as a simple traffic-light indicator. Carbon intensity is a measure of how much greenhouse gas (especially CO2 or carbon dioxide) is emitted to generate a fixed amount of electricity.
Anything other than a GREEN light suggests that you should consider deferring heavy loads (eg starting a dishwasher or washing-machine at home) because the carbon intensity is relatively high, or because of other factors. Avoiding running major appliances such as washing/heating/cooking during RED times will save CO2 emissions.
You should still conserve first: don't run things that don't need to be run at all, don't leave things on that can be turned off at the wall, run full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher, etc, etc, before worrying about carbon intensity.
Planning ahead: note that in the UK/GB peak demand for electricity will usually be 4pm to 9pm especially on week days in winter (and a lesser peak around 9am/10am), and peak carbon intensity is often around peak demand, so try to avoid big loads then; if possible run loads such as your dishwasher and washing machine overnight, eg on a delay timer or just as you go to bed, or when you have local microgeneration that can cover much/all of the load.
There are various arguments about whether this marginal cost calculation reflects reality, ie in practice is there simply a gas turbine somewhere that gets spun up a little if you demand extra power. There is much less argument about the value of lowering demand generally, and about lowering peak demand on various parts of the infrastructure.
Shifting loads to the night when energy is going into grid-scale storage such as pumped hydro, avoids pulling it out when you would otherwise run/dispatch the load, and thus saves round-trip losses of ~25% for that load.
You don't need to understand the numbers below, but some people like to see them!
Effective grid carbon intensity for a domestic user is currently 197gCO2/kWh including transmission and distribution losses of 7%.
Latest available grid generation carbon intensity (ignoring transmission/distribution losses) is approximately 184gCO2/kWh at Thu Dec 07 19:35:00 UTC 2023 over 41244MW of generation, with a rolling average over 24h of 186gCO2/kWh.
Minimum grid generation carbon intensity (ignoring transmission/distribution losses) was approximately 139gCO2/kWh at Thu Dec 07 05:25:00 UTC 2023.
Maximum grid generation carbon intensity (ignoring transmission/distribution losses) was approximately 262gCO2/kWh at Wed Dec 06 20:10:00 UTC 2023.
Average/mean grid generation carbon intensity (ignoring transmission/distribution losses) was approximately 186gCO2/kWh over the sample data set, with an effective end-user intensity including transmission and distribution losses of 199gCO2/kWh.
|Recent mean GMT hourly generation intensity gCO2/kWh (average=186); *now (=184)|
|Mean GMT hourly generation GW (all, zero-carbon)|
Current/latest fuel mix at Thu Dec 07 19:35:00 UTC 2023: BIOMASS@3024MW CCGT@15984MW COAL@939MW INTELEC@0MW INTEW@0MW INTFR@0MW INTIFA2@0MW INTIRL@0MW INTNED@0MW INTNEM@0MW INTNSL@0MW INTVKL@0MW NPSHYD@307MW NUCLEAR@4738MW OCGT@1MW OIL@0MW OTHER@180MW PS@0MW WIND@16071MW.
Generation by fuel category (may overlap):
Overall generation intensity (kgCO2/kWh) computed using the following fuel year-2023 intensities (other fuels/sources are ignored): BIOMASS=0.12 CCGT=0.394 COAL=0.937 INTELEC=0.053 INTEW=0.458 INTFR=0.053 INTIFA2=0.053 INTIRL=0.458 INTNED=0.474 INTNEM=0.179 INTNSL=0.016 INTVKL=0.016 NPSHYD=0.0 NUCLEAR=0.0 OCGT=0.651 OIL=0.935 OTHER=0.3 WIND=0.0.
Rolling correlation of fuel use against grid intensity (-ve implies that this fuel reduces grid intensity for non-callable sources): BIOMASS=-0.0762 CCGT=0.8694 COAL=-0.5379 INTELEC=0.2528 INTEW=-0.4965 INTFR=0.2672 INTIRL=-0.4929 INTNED=0.2222 INTNEM=0.2546 INTNSL=-0.1853 NPSHYD=0.2762 NUCLEAR=0.2850 OCGT=-0.3039 OTHER=0.3388 WIND=-0.2765.
Key to fuel codes:
(Histogram input windows: 24h, 168h.)
This estimates the carbon intensity of generation connected to the National Grid GB (Great Britain) high-voltage transmission system, ignoring (pumped) storage and exports but including imports via interconnectors. This excludes 'embedded' generation, eg connected directly to the distribution system, such as small diesels, domestic microgeneration and a significant chunk of wind power, all of which also benefits from reduced transmission/distribution losses, so actual intensity may be somewhat different to (and probably lower than) that reported. However the emissions cost of each marginal/conserved kWh is probably accurately reflected.
(Colours are wrt the last 24h of data.)
This page updated at Thu Dec 07 19:41:11 UTC 2023; generation time 9620ms.
Poll every 10 minutes for 404 HTTP status code (404 means green, 200 means not green, anything else is 'unknown' status due to server/network/other problems) for automated systems:
Please email me if you use this mechanism, to be alerted to changes.
This free service may be unavailable or withdrawn at any time and is provided "as-is" with no warranties of any kind.
Some data used to generate this page is licensed from ELEXON.
Copyright © Damon Hart-Davis 2010--2023. [home]