Energy secretary Amber Rudd has announced plans to close the last of the UK's unabated coal-fired power stations by 2025.
In a statement this morning, she said a consultation to scrap coal-fired power stations altogether, and restrict their use by 2023, will begin early next year.
"It cannot be satisfactory for an advanced economy like the UK to be relying on polluting, carbon intensive 50-year-old coal-fired power stations. Let me be clear: this is not the future," she said.
The news comes on the same day a Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) report suggested demand for power will outpace supply by 2016.
The report suggested that with coal-fired plans due to close next year, the 54,000 megawatts of demand forecast will not be covered by the National Grid's output, of 52,000 MW.
However, Rudd said the UK's energy security "comes first".
"I am determined to ensure that the UK has secure, affordable and clean energy supplies that hardworking families and businesses can rely on now and in the future."
“We are tackling a legacy of underinvestment and ageing power stations which we need to replace with alternatives that are reliable, good value for money, and help to reduce our emissions."
Later this month world leaders will come together in Paris for a summit on climate change, aimed at agreeing a deal on reducing global greenhouse gas emissions.