UK ran on 40% renewables on Christmas Day, data shows


‘Tis the season to be renewable, at least in the U.K. where the nation sourced more than 40% of its electricity from renewable energy on Christmas Day – the highest figure ever.

Power group Drax analyzed the U.K.’s output on December 25, and found that wind accounted for three-quarters of the clean energy generated, with solar PV making up the majority of the remaining 25%.

This year’s performance outshines that of 2015, when 25% of the nation’s electricity sourced on Christmas Day came from renewables, and is indicative of the U.K.’s evolving energy landscape.

“These Christmas figures show that the U.K. energy system really is changing,” said Drax Power chief executive Andy Koss. “Renewables are increasingly vital to the U.K.’s energy mix as we decarbonize and move away from coal.”

Analyst firm Electric Insights produced the figures on behalf of Drax, which is the U.K.’s largest coal power producer. However, Koss said that the company is in the process of converting to using biomass at its main facilities.

The data shows that renewable sources generated 12.4 GW of electricity on December 25, which is 63% more than in 2015 and a 195% increase on 2012, when 12% of the U.K. was powered by renewables.

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