Solar energy sets new record in the United Kingdom

April 22, 2016 0 By Alicia Moore

Solar has beat out coal in terms of energy production

Solar energy has reached a new milestone in the United Kingdom, benefiting from the continued decline of coal power. Last weekend, solar power was able to provide more electrical power for homes than coal was able to in a 24 hour period. The solar sector has beaten coal in terms of electricity generation in the past, but only for a few hours. As the solar sector continues to expand, the need for coal will diminish, with solar power eventually replacing this conventional form of energy over time.

Solar power was able to generate 29 GWh of electrical power last Saturday, meeting 4% of consumer demandRenewable Energy - Oregon to become coal-free

According to data from the National Grid and Carbon Brief, the new milestone shows just how far coal has fallen in the United Kingdom. The data shows that 29 gigawatt-hours of electrical power were generated through solar power systems last Saturday. This was able to accommodate approximately 4% of the country’s energy demand on that day. By comparison, coal generated 21 gigawatt-hours of electrical power.

Incentives help the solar sector flourish in the UK

Over the past two years, solar installations have grown aggressively throughout the United Kingdom. The government has secured the growth of the solar sector by offering consumers subsidies and other such support. These incentives have made it easier for consumers to adopt solar power. According to information from the solar industry, the UK now has 12 gigawatts of solar capacity. The country could be home to some 90 gigawatts of capacity in the coming years, with new projects reaching completion and producing electrical power.

Economics of coal continue to deteriorate

The rise in renewable energy has caused a shift for the coal business. Energy analysts note that the economics surrounding coal are quite poor currently. Over the past 18 months, the coal sector has deteriorated significantly, which has paved the way for the growth of clean energy systems in many parts of the United Kingdom. Solar energy, in particular, has benefited from the poor standing of coal and will continue to do so through the coming years.