Rt Hon Lord Lilley

    Peter Lilley (Hitchin and Harpenden, Conservative):

    To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what studies his Department has made of the life expectancy and reliability of combined cycle gas turbines to provide balancing capacity for fluctuations in power generated by wind turbines.

    Amber Rudd (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change; Hastings and Rye, Conservative):

    The responsiveness of Open Cycle Gas Turbines (OCGTs) and Combined Cycle Gas Turbines (CCGTs) is such that they can be utilised to provide system balancing services at national or local level, including responding to fluctuations in wind generation.

    The Department published a study in June 2014 which contains information on the life expectancy of combined cycle gas turbines1.

    In addition, the Department has also commissioned two further studies2. The first considers the cost and performance of near-term and future CCGT plant when operating under different duty cycles to facilitate the increased level of intermittent renewable generation on the system. The second study considers the flexibility of gas plant and identifies typical start up times for both open cycle and combined cycle gas turbines.

    [1] Coal and Gas Assumptions, Parsons Brinckerhoffhttps://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coal-and-gas-assumptions

    2 Currently unpublished – the Department intends to publish both reports by the end of the year.