Renewable energy breaks UK record in first quarter of 2020
‘Substantial increase’ in wind and solar power helped to generate 47% of Britain’s electricity
Thu 25 Jun 2020 14.01 BSTLast modified on Thu 25 Jun 2020 14.56 BST
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The government’s official data has revealed that renewable energy
The government’s renewable energy data includes electricity from the UK’s windfarms, solar panels and hydro power plants as well as bioenergy generated by burning wood chips
The “substantial increase” in the UK’s total renewable energy output was chiefly driven by a growth in electricity generated by solar panels
The report added that the start up of new windfarms
Offshore windfarms powered the largest increase in renewable energy in the first quarter of the year, climbing by 53% compared with the previous year, while onshore wind generation grew by a fifth.
In total, wind power generated 30% of the UK’s electricity in the first quarter, beating the previous record of 22.3% set in the final months of 2019.
Rebecca Williams, of Renewable UK, said the renewable energy industry’s records were bound to be broken again in the years ahead as the government worked on “a massive expansion of renewables as part of the UK’s green economic recovery”.
Britain last week set a new coal-free record of more than two months
Williams said the government’s record quarterly data showed the clean energy transition “written very large indeed” because the records had been set at the coldest time of year “when we need it most”.
The rise of renewable energy combined with a steady supply of nuclear power, which made up about 15% of the UK generation mix, drove fossil fuel power plants to a new record low in the first quarter.
Gas-fired power plants made up less than a third of UK generation in the first quarter compared with over 40% in the first months of 2019, and coal-fired power made up 3.8% of electricity generated in the UK.