UK Renewables Break Records
There was significant growth in renewable electricity in the UK in 2015, up 19% compared to the year before, according to data from the Department of Energy and Climate Change.
Renewables’ share of electricity generation reached a record 22.3% in quarter one of 2015, up 2.6 percentage points on the share in the same period in 2014. This was mostly put down to increased capacity.
Renewable electricity generation totalled a record 21.1TWh in Q1 of 2015, an increase of 15% on the 18.4TWh recorded in 2014 Q1.
In the first quarter of 2015, wind generation increased by 5.3% to 11.7TWh with increasing capacity recorded in offshore in particular.
Plant biomass showed the highest increase in generation, almost doubling from 2.2TWh in 2014 Q1 to 4.3TWh in 2015 Q1.
Solar PV also showed strong growth at 60% from 0.5TWh to 0.8TWh, due to increased c apacity. Over two thirds of the total renewable energy capacity of 26.4MW at the end of 2015 Q1 was due to new, predominantly large-scale, solar PV capacity.
Additionally, 148MW of capacity joined the Feed in Tariff scheme in 2015 Q1, bringing the total to 3567MW. Of this, solar PVs contributed 143MW, while wind contributed 3MW.
Electricity generated from onshore wind grew from 6.7TWh in 2014 Q1 to 7.0TWh in the same period this year, an increase of 4.7%. Generation from offshore wind increased by 6.3% to 4.7TWh due to increased capacity. This was despite the fact that average wind speeds were slightly lower than in the first quarter of 2014.
Onshore wind showed the largest share of generation at 33%, while offshore wind racked up 22%, hydro 9.5% and solar PV recorded 3.6%.
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