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New records set in best ever year for British wind energy generation

5 January 2016

RenewableUK is highlighting new official statistics from National Grid which show that 2015 was a record year for wind energy generation, with onshore and offshore wind farms supplying their largest ever amounts of clean electricity to Britain’s homes, factories and offices. Wind set new weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual generation records.

11% of the UK’s electricity was generated by wind last year – up from 9.5% in 2014.

Wind provided enough electricity to meet the annual needs of more than 8.25 million homes – more than 30% of UK households - up from 6.7 million homes last year.

December 2015 saw a fresh monthly record set, with wind suppling 17% of Britain’s electricity demand at a time of the year when it’s needed most. The previous monthly record of 14% was set in January 2015 – another cold period of the year.

A new weekly record was also set in December, with wind providing 20% of the nation’s needs in the last week of the month - Christmas week - up from 19% 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% of the nation’s electricity demand met by wind - beating the previous 12% high in the first quarter of 2015.

RenewableUK’s Director of Policy Dr Gordon Edge 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. This re-writes the record books. We’ve had a bumper harvest thanks to increased deployment and superb wind speeds.

“It also demonstrates why the Government should continue to support wind energy, as we’re delivering on our commitment to keep Britain powered up. 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”.

(ends)

Notes:

1. National Grid statistics are supplied to RenewableUK by independent data analysts EnAppSys, and take account of all electricity generation, including embedded capacity (i.e. wind turbines connected to local networks, as well as those connected to the national transmission network) www.enappsys.com

2. 11% of UK electricity generated by wind in 2015 comprises 5.8% from onshore wind and 5.2% from offshore wind. In 2014, 5.5% came from onshore and 4% from offshore.
Overall, 21% of the UK’s electricity came from renewable energy sources in 2015.

3. 2015 onshore wind deployment: 403 megawatts (2014: 1,110MW). (2013: 1,337MW)
2015 offshore wind deployment: 1,061.5 MW (2014: 389MW) (2013: 981.1MW)

4. The Office for National Statistics states that are 27.0 million households in the UK: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/family-demography/families-and-households/2015/index.html

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Media Contacts:

  • Robert Norris, Head of Communications, 020 7901 3013 or 07969 229913
  • Adam Wentworth, Communications Officer, 020 7901 3038 or 07791 702 702
RenewableUK is the UK’s leading renewable energy trade association, specialising in onshore wind, offshore wind and wave & tidal energy. Formed in 1978, we have an established, large corporate membership ranging from small independent companies, to large international corporations and manufacturers. Acting as a central point of information and a united, representative voice for our membership, we conduct research; find solutions; organise events, facilitate business development, and promote wind and marine renewables to government, industry, the media and the public. Our vision is for renewable energy to play a leading role in powering the UK.

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