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December storms produce record wind farm electricity production

December’s stormy weather resulted in wind farms producing up to 12.2% of the UK’s electricity demand in December, according to figures released from green-lobby group RenewableUK today.

RenewableUK’s data showed December’s strong winds allowed the UK’s wind fleet to meet an average of 5.3% electricity of demand across the country. The group also praised National Grid’s handling of the large volumes of electricity generated by wind farms over the festive period.

As a result, carbon emissions from the UK’s electricity generators were cut by over 750,000t, equivalent to taking over 300,000 cars off the road.

However, the high winds did cause a fire on a turbine in the Ardrossan wind farm in Scotland.


Readers' comments (4)


    Is this an NCE Editorial or a Renewables UK press release?.

    The words "up to 12.2%" fall into the same category as "Ryanair flights from £0.45". For a short period between 2am and 4am I guess when there is next to no demand.

    NCE: please treat your readership of ICE members with a bit more respect and do not act as the promoters for a trade body with an agenda!

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  • Mesaage to says,12.2% of December. Why doubt it? As you admit, your guessing pessimistically that someone is lying to you. Give credit where credit is due and don't discourage these valiant efforts to make a better world. Unthoughful cynicism is awfully damaging.

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  • I'm with Steve Carney. We need all the renewable energy we can get. What we don't want is the constant carping - especially as in the very article that your first correspondent is complaining about the average consumption across the country in December was given (5,3%). Apart from the need to reduce carbon dioxide, the use of oil and gas for producing electricity is daft when we can produce it from wind power. Turbines in their lifetime will produce between 20 times and 90 times the energy used in making them and their support system (the huge range is because some offshore turbines are much more expensive energy-wise to put in place, while more modern designs are more efficient.)

    So let's celebrate the 5.3% and the 12%, but let's not lose sight of the target of 30% in 8 years time.
    Now if you want to join a lobby group, as opposed to celebrating what we have achieved, what about getting behind the Severn Barrage?
    Peter Gardiner FICE

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  • I have to say I'm firmly with Mr. Roberts on this one. There is more than adequate factual information on the subject of the realities of wind power to justify his pessimistic view. The press release from RenewableUK quite understandably doesn't explore the statistics on the numbers of turbines that suffered fires due to over-speeding or have otherwise failed due to the buffetting they received from the "December storms". I suspect that those statistics would make for interesting reading. Even disregarding these, as an Engineer it gives me little cause for celebration when this grossly inefficient system occasionally performs uncharacteristically well. In my boook that's a bit like celebrating the charitable donations of a serial thief!

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