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Renewables hit 33% of electricity generation in 2018

Image: Getty

Image: Getty

Renewables racked up a record share of UK electricity generation in 2018, contributing one-third of the country's power supply.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy's (BEIS) latest Digest of UK Energy Statistics (DUKES) placed renewables’ share of UK electricity generation at more than 33% in 2018, up 3.8 percentage points from 29.2% in 2017.

Renewables generated 110TWh, 30TWh of which was from onshore wind and 27TWh from offshore wind, up 5.2% and 28% from 2017 respectively. Solar PV also saw an increase in generation by 12% to 12.9TWh.

BEIS cites the increase in solar generation to a rise in the average sunlight hours over any significant increase in capacity. The statistics stated that only 0.3GW of capacity was added in 2018, the lowest annual increase since 2011.

Onshore wind held onto its first-place position in terms of renewable generation capacity, coming in at 30.6%. Solar came in second at 29.6%, having last topped the list in 2016.

However, this is a decrease on 2017, where onshore wind made up a 31.7% share of renewable generation capacity and solar PV 31.5%.

Onshore wind did see a 7.6% increase in capacity, even as its overall share of renewable generation capacity fell, and offshore wind capacity increased by 17.6%, contributing to the rise in generation, with wind generation representing 65% of the total increase.

The DUKES aren’t too dissimilar to statistics released last week by EnAppSys, which recorded renewables share of generation at 33.1% for the second quarter of this year. Wind – onshore and offshore combined - made up 49.1% of total renewable generation and solar 19.1%.

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