The world’s first self-proclaimed green electricity company, Ecotricity, have taken green energy to the next (electronic) level, thanks to a new initiative on their website which displays near-up to the minute data about the energy being generated by their 55 wind turbines.
Updated every 30 seconds (on average), the website not only displays the total output of all of Ecotricity’s windmills, but also the number of units of green electricity made so far in the month, and the total tonnage of carbon dioxide saved as a result.
The page is refreshed every time Ecotricity receives new data from one of their wind sites, and Ecotricity claim that the 55 existing windmills have the capacity to generate over 60,000 kWh — though, as they note, that “is the upper limit for how much it could generate if the wind was blowing constantly and the windmill turning at full pelt.”
Onshore windmills across the UK typically generate around 27 per cent of the full amount they could produce if the wind was blowing constantly over the course of a year – this is called ‘the load factor’. Off-shore wind has a load factor of around 35 per cent. In 2012, conventional power stations had load factors of 30 per cent for gas, 70 percent for nuclear and 57 per cent for coal.
So far (as of the time of writing), Ecotricity have generated 6,258,000 units (a unit being one Kilowatt hour (kWh)) — though by the time you read this I suspect that number will have increased rapidly towards and over 7 million units. It’s a refreshing and oddly satisfying tool to be able to view, even if I’m not living in the UK.
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