Record-breaking January for UK wind energy

Paul Boughton

Wind energy broke new records for weekly, monthly and half-hourly generation in January, highlighting the central role wind now plays in the country’s energy mix, according to figures from National Grid.

January was the most productive month ever for wind energy, providing 14% of Britain’s electricity (4.13 terawatt hours) - enough to power the equivalent of 8.7 million UK homes. The weekly record was also broken in January with 1.119 gigawatt hours generated, and the half-hourly record was exceeded on 2nd Jan when wind supplied 31% of Britain’s electricity demand.

The news came as overall UK wind capacity (onshore and offshore) topped 12 gigawatts for the first time, a milestone for the country – enough to supply nearly 7 million British households.

RenewableUK’s Director of External Affairs, Jennifer Webber said: “The past few months have seen significantly high levels of generation for wind energy and January was no exception. It’s great to see wind making such a positive contribution to Britain’s clean energy needs at a cold time of year when we need it most, and this can only continue with greater capacity coming online – reaching 12 gigawatts is an achievement which the industry and the nation can be proud of. But if we’re to secure a supply of clean energy for the long term future, we need all the mainstream political parties to support the wind industry, onshore and offshore, in the General Election and beyond.”

The National Grid statistics provided by independent data analysts EnAppSys. This includes National Grid estimates for embedded wind - ie, turbines feeding into local networks.

January’s monthly wind generation record of 14% beat December 2014’s record of 13.6%.

The weekly record was set during 5th-11th January. The previous weekly record was 1.11TWh for the week beginning 8th December 2014. The previous half-hourly percentage record was 30% set on 3rd November 2013.