UK wind energy sets new record for August



Wind power in the UK continues to see high levels of energy generation, as figures show the sector reached a record hourly output for August on Sunday.

RenewableUK found wind averaged over 5 gigawatts (GW) of power, with high winds in the evening meaning the green energy outperformed coal.

The trade body’s figures show that between 9.30pm and 10pm on Sunday August 11, wind generation was at the highest percentage share for the month so far, meeting 17% of national demand.

The 5GW generated is higher than record hourly rates in August over the last two years. RenewableUK noted overall records were set this winter, with over 7GW of wind generation recorded in January.

Jennifer Webber, director of external affairs at RenewableUK told Blue & Green Tomorrow, “These latest figures show that wind is continuing to provide a significant proportion of the UK’s electricity all year round, including the hot summer months, outstripping the contribution from traditional carbon-heavy sources like coal.”

Both offshore and onshore wind generation have continued to increase from 2012–2013.

Recent energy statistics from the Department of Energy and Climate Change found both onshore and offshore load factors exceeded or equaled that of gas.

RenewablesUK said on their website, “Load factors for wind in 2013 were the highest since 1998, due to high wind speeds, particular in the last quarter of the year.”

More than half of Britain’s clean electricity now comes from onshore and offshore wind. We’re now on course to hit 10% of electricity from wind alone this year,” said, RenewableUK director of policy, Dr Gordon Edge.

There was a blow to offshore wind earlier this month, with Centrica announcing they will withdraw from the proposed 440-turbine offshore wind development, the Celtic Array.

However, the UK is still a world leader in offshore wind with a total of 62 offshore wind projects in the UK, including those in development.

Photo: Patrick Finnegan via Flickr

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Further reading:

Centrica backs out of giant £40m offshore wind project Celtic Array

Renewable energy accounted for 15% of UK electricity in 2013

Wind investment opportunity offers better return than best savings rate

German renewable energy sector sets new world record

Financing the future of renewable energy


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