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Low carbon electricity generation increases

Renewables generation up

Electricity generated by low carbon sources is up 45.3% to a record 50% in the third quarter of 2016, compared to the same quarter in 2015.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) said that the increase was due to an increased generation from renewables (wind and solar) and nuclear.

Low carbon generation methods are onshore wind, offshore wind, hydro, solar PV, bioenergy (including co-firing). Only bioenergy fell, dropping 14.5% from the same quarter in 2015 from 7.1TWh to 6.1TWh mainly, said the BEIS, due to maintenance outages at Drax’s converted biomass units.

The results were published as part of the Energy Trends and Energy Prices report for the third quarter of 2016.

Of the electricity generated in the third quarter of 2016, gas accounted for 43.6%, while coal’s share fell to 3.6% as a result of reduced capacity, including the closures of Ferrybridge C and Longannet in March 2016 and with the conversion of a unit at Drax from coal to high-range co-firing (85% to less than 100% biomass).

It said that nuclear generation accounted for 25%, while the share from renewables increased by 1.3 percentage points to 25%.

Overall the report said that the total electricity generated in the quarter was 1.2% lower than a year earlier, as was imports which fell by 19.5% and accounted for 6.2% of electricity supply. However, it also stated that the final consumption of electricity was down 1.9% on the previous year.

Electricity generated from2016 Q3 TWh Percentage change on 2015 Q3
Coal  2.7 -78.9
 Nuclear  18.9 13.9
 Gas  32.9 23.6
 Renewables  18.8 4.3
 Total  75.4 -1.2

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