The share of the UK’s energy mix generated by coal dropped to a record-low of just 0.7% between the months of April and June 2019, compared to the same period in 2018.
That’s according to the UK government’s Department for Energy Business and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), which has released figures showing that coal-powered generation was a record 63% lower for the period, which would cover the spring season in the country.
Renewable sources filled the gap to a large extent, rising by 12% year-on-year, thanks in no small part to offshore wind power which rose by 25% bolstered by the launch of the UK’s largest offshore plant, the 84-turbine Beatrice facility off the Scottish coast.
The British government says the drop in coal use is in-line with its “sustained support of renewable energy” and part of its plan to eliminate coal-powered generation in Great Britain by 2025.
2019 has seen the UK operate without coal for almost three weeks in total – a new record.
2018 figures from the BEIS have shown that more than half of Britain’s electricity was produced using low-carbon generation, with renewables accounting for a third of that figure, jumping by 29.2% since 2018.
The government also noted that 99% of the UK’s current solar capacity has been put into operation since 2010, with photovoltaic technology powering Britain to a record 12.9TWh in 2018, 12% up on 2017.
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A BEIS spokesperson said: “Coal-generated energy will soon be a distant memory on our path to becoming a net-zero emissions economy.
“This new record low is a result of our world-leading low carbon energy industry, which provided more than half of our energy last year and continues to go from strength to strength, as we aim to end our contribution to climate change entirely by 2050.”
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