Solar drives UK renewables output to record high


UK renewables output as a percentage of the total generation mix hit a record high this spring, government figures show.

Dukes data for April to June shows renewables contributed 31.7% of power generated, up from 30.6 in Q2 2017. This was driven by a higher level of sunlight hours compared to the same time last year, and higher solar capacity.

While wind generation capacity also increased, it was offset by “very low” wind speeds, according to the data, remaining flat in output terms. Less rain meant hydro also contributed fewer gigawatt hours.

Coal’s share of the generation mix fell from 2% to 1.6%. Due to outages, nuclear contributed less, 21.7% versus 23.1% the prior year. Gas picked up the slack, contributing 42% of total generation against 41.3 per cent in Q2 2017.

Final consumption of electricity fell by 1.0 per cent to 69.5 TWh. Domestic use fell by 2.9 per cent to a record low for Q2, from 23.4 TWh to 22.7 TWh, largely driven by warmer weather. Dukes data suggests improved energy efficiency also factored.

Industrial use of electricity, including iron and steel, increased by 1.5 per cent, to 22.5 TWh. Consumption by commercial and other users decreased by 1.4 per cent to 23.2 TWh.

See the statistics here.

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