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UK smashes yet another coal-free record

Image: EDF Energy.

Image: EDF Energy.

UPDATE: The UK's continuous coal-free streak has continued into another day and, as of 8am on Wednesday 8 May 2019, stood at 162 hours, six hours short of a full week.

The UK has smashed through its coal-free grid operation record, and is zeroing in on a week-long landmark.

Coal last generated in the UK before 2pm on last Wednesday 1 May, and smashed through the previous record at around 9am on Sunday 5 May.

The most recent coal-free record was set also on a bank holiday weekend. From 10:30pm Thursday 18 April 2019 until 5:30pm on Monday 22 April 2019, a period of just over 90 hours, the country’s energy demand was met entirely without coal.

However the country’s coal-free record has shown no sign of abating and as of 4pm today (Tuesday 7 May 2019), the UK has gone 146 hours without coal.

Should the UK make it another 22 hours, it will set a new milestone of having gone a week without any coal generation.

And the signs are good, with Duncan Burt, director of operations for National Grid, System Operator, commenting that it looks promising for that feat to be achieved, having lasted today’s morning peak.

Burt also tweeted to commend the work of those at National Grid in making it happen.

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Figures provided by Drax Electric Insights show that for a period on Saturday afternoon, the country’s solar and wind fleet combined to supply more than 53% of the country energy demand, also coinciding with the lowest carbon intensity of the period at 72g CO2/kWh.

The new coal-free run also means that the UK has exceeded 1,000 hours without coal generation this year already, as figures compiled by MyGridGB confirm.

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