Britain’s renewable electricity production increased 27% in 2017 to 96 TWh, more than enough to power the country 60 years ago, according to the latest Electric Insights report on Wednesday.
In 1958, 52 million Brits used 91 TWh of electricity, 92% of which came from coal. Last year, coal accounted for only 7% of power, while half came from low carbon sources, according to the report from researchers at Imperial College London, published together with Drax Group Plc (LON:DRX).
Biomass, hydro, wind and solar provided 25% of grid electricity in 2017.
The increase in renewable generation last year was driven by a 45% jump in wind power, thanks to the combination of higher wind speeds and the completion of several onshore and offshore wind farms. Wind, as a result, boosted its share in power generation to 15% in 2017 from 10% in 2016.
“60 years ago, the power system emitted 93 million tonnes of CO2; in 2017 renewables managed to produce the same amount of electricity by emitting just three million tonnes,” said Iain Staffell, from Imperial College London.
In 2017, Britain reduced its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from electricity consumption by 12%.