First it was the tail end of Hurricane Bertha, now it is just high August winds — either way, the United Kingdom’s onshore and offshore wind turbines met 22% of the country’s electricity demand this past Sunday, setting a new record.
Most impressive, however, is the fact that this figure comfortably outperforms coal, which only met 13% of demand.
RenewableUK, the country’s leading renewable energy trade association, announced the figures on Monday, confirming that they had beaten the previous record set earlier in the month of 21%.
“We’re seeing very high levels of generation from wind throughout August so far, proving yet again that onshore and offshore wind has become an absolutely fundamental component in this country’s energy mix,” RenewableUK’s Director of External Affairs, Jennifer Webber, said. “It also shows that wind is a dependable and reliable source of power in every month of year – including high summer.”
More specifically, Sunday saw the UK’s onshore and offshore wind turbines generate an average of 5,797 MW — enough to power more than 15 million UK homes.
In terms of generating distribution, wind outperformed coal (13%), solar (3%), biomass (3%), and hydro (1%), and competed strongly with nuclear (24%) and gas (26%).
Wind energy has been performing well around the world. Spain, one of the original renewable energy powerhouses, reported that 30% of July’s electricity demand was generated by wind energy. While down here in my home-country of Australia, wind made up 43% of the state of South Australia’s energy demand in July — a figure many of us wish the current government would pay attention to.
As wind energy continues to develop and push its technology, we are going to be seeing more of these figures pop up, and hopefully governments will begin to pay more and more attention to such a dominant energy technology.