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30.1% share and 27.9TWh: The stats behind renewables’ record breaking Q1

Image: Getty.

Image: Getty.

Renewables’ share of electricity generation in the UK inched closer to one-third in the first three months of the year, topping 30%.

The latest update from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s quarterly trends reveals that renewable generation in Q1 2018 increase by just more than three percentage points on 2017’s performance.

That was enough to set a new generation record of 27.9TWh, more than 10.2% - equivalent of around 2.6TWh – on generation throughout the same period in 2017.

BEIS attributed this predominantly to higher wind speeds and the addition of an additional 4.2GW of generation capacity over the course of the previous year, nearly half of which was offshore wind.

Total wind generation stood at 17.7TWh in the period – another new record – while solar generation dipped slightly year-on-year to 1.5TWh, not aided by weather patterns.

Solar will, however, have enjoyed a far more favourable Q2 with preliminary figures showing a record-breaking May and the technology having regularly contributed more than 20% of the country’s power supply within hourly periods of the recent heatwave.

Figures compiled by Sheffield Solar’s PV_Live tool show that solar produced around 1.77 TWh of electricity in May – more than the total figure for Q1 2018 alone – and far beating the previous record of 1.47TWh generated last May.

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