New statistics from grid operator National Grid show that 2015 was a record year for wind energy generation in the U.K.
RenewableUK, a U.K.-based trade association, said National Grid’s statistics show that 11 percent of the U.K.’s electricity was generated by onshore and offshore wind last year – up from 9.5 percent in 2014.
In December 2015, wind supplied 17 percent of Britain’s electricity demand, setting a new monthly record for the country, the association said. The previous monthly record of 14 percent was set in January 2015. In addition, a new weekly record was set in December 2015, with wind providing 20 percent of the country’s needs in the last week of the month – up from 19 percent in the second week of November.
Wind also broke the quarterly generation record in the three-month period from October to December 2015, with 13 percent of the country’s electricity demand met by wind – beating the previous 12 percent high in the first quarter of 2015, RenewableUK said.
“This is a great way to start the new year – the wind industry can be proud that it has shattered weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual generation records in 2015,” RenewableUK’s Director of Policy Gordon Edge said in a statement. “We can continue to increase the proportion of the nation’s electricity which we provide as we move away from fossil fuels to clean sources of power.”
National Grid owns the electricity transmission system in England and Wales. According to the RenewableUK wind energy database, the U.K. has an installed onshore wind energy capacity of 8.5 GW and offshore wind energy capacity of 5.1 GW. RenewableUK reported that of the 11 percent of electricity generated by wind in 2015, 5.8 percent came from onshore wind and 5.2 percent came from offshore wind. In 2014, 5.5 percent came from onshore and 4 percent from offshore. Overall, 21 percent of the U.K.’s electricity came from renewable energy sources in 2015.
Lead image: Wind farm near Lisset, Yorkshire, U.K. Credit: Shutterstock.