Portugal, Spain, Finland, and Belgium have all broken renewable energy records in recent months, as the use of wind and solar power continues to grow across Europe.
In Portugal, solar and wind power generated more than half of the country’s electricity in April, for the first time ever. This was driven by strong solar deployment, electricity imports from Spain, and lower demand.
Spain also saw all-time records of solar generation in April, with even higher records expected in the summer months when energy from solar is typically at its peak. Wind and solar combined were also near record high levels in Spain, comprising 46% of electricity produced.
Sweden hit an all-time high in February of this year with more than a quarter (27%) of electricity coming from wind and solar. Finland saw wind and solar reach a record 29% of generation in April. And Belgium also recorded an all-time high for wind and solar last month; the clean energy sources hit 2 TWh and made up 29% of electricity generation in the country.
These records are a testament to the growing importance of renewable energy in Europe. As the continent transitions away from fossil fuels, wind and solar are becoming increasingly essential to meeting our energy needs.
The benefits of renewable energy
There are many benefits to using renewable energy. For one, it is a clean and sustainable source of energy that does not produce greenhouse gases. This is important as we work to address the climate crisis.
Renewable energy is also a reliable source of energy. Wind and solar power can be generated day and night, regardless of weather conditions. This makes them a good option for baseload power, which is the minimum amount of electricity that must be generated at all times to meet demand.
Finally, renewable energy is becoming increasingly affordable. The cost of solar and wind power has fallen dramatically in recent years, making them a cost-competitive option for electricity generation.
The future of renewable energy
The growth of renewable energy is a positive trend for Europe. As we transition away from fossil fuels, wind and solar will play an increasingly important role in meeting our energy needs.
There are a number of challenges that need to be addressed in order to ensure the continued growth of renewable energy. One challenge is the need to invest in grid infrastructure to accommodate the intermittent nature of wind and solar power. Another challenge is the need to develop new technologies to store renewable energy so that it can be used when it is needed most.
Despite these challenges, the future of renewable energy looks bright. With continued investment and innovation, wind and solar have the potential to meet a significant portion of Europe’s energy needs in the years to come.
What can we do to support the growth of renewable energy?
There are a number of things that we can do to support the growth of renewable energy. We can:
- Choose renewable energy providers. When we choose our electricity and gas providers, we can choose those that offer renewable energy plans. This helps to increase the demand for renewable energy and supports the growth of the industry.
- Support renewable energy projects. There are a number of renewable energy projects that are looking for funding. We can support these projects by donating money or investing in them.
- Advocate for renewable energy policies. We can contact our elected officials and let them know that we support policies that promote renewable energy. This helps to create a more supportive environment for the growth of the industry.
By taking these steps, we can help to ensure that the growth of renewable energy continues and that we can meet our energy needs in a clean and sustainable way.