Wind power increasing contribution to UK’s renewable energy supply

March 31st, 2012 by RenewableUK

RenewableUK, the trade association for the wind, wave and tidal industry, has hailed the publication of UK Government figures as a clear demonstration of the significant role wind power now plays in Britain’s energy mix.

Wind power capacity increased by over a gigawatt in 2011, and output increased by over 5.3 gigawatt-hours to 15.5GWh – equivalent to the annual demand of 4.7 million homes.

Growing contribution of renewable energy to UK energy supply (click graph to expand - Source: UK Department of Energy & Climate Change)

Maria McCaffery, RenewableUK’s Chief Executive,  said “wind power is working. 2011’s strong winds increased output by an enormous 54.5 %, increasing the share of the electricity we receive from Britain’s weather. In doing so, it helped cut the amount of fossil fuels we needed to buy to burn – helping to contain energy prices for UK households.

Capacity factors for wind in 2011 were 27.4% for onshore and 36.7% for offshore, with an average of 30% for all UK wind farms.

“While we can’t guarantee last year’s strong winds this year, we’re already on course to install at least another gigawatt of wind capacity this year, ensuring that the share of electricity that we get from wind will continue to rise, while the carbon emissions from our electricity generation system go down.”

UK renewable energy production for 2011 (click table to expand - source UK Department of Energy & Climate Change)

RenewableUK is hosting the world’s first ever global offshore wind industry conference at London’s Excel Arena on 13 and 14 June 2012.

The UK’s leading position in this field makes this event a focus for discussions not just for offshore wind technology, but also the wider decarbonisation agenda and the economic, as well as environmental, benefits associated with green growth.

Ed Davey MP, the UK Secretary of State for Energy & Climate Change, will speak at the conference.

Edward Davey, UK Minister for Energy and Climate Change (click image to expand - image courtesy of DECC)


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