UK Breaks Solar Power Record

Solar power has once again broken records in the UK by providing nearly a quarter of the country’s electricity demand.

On Friday 24 May, The National Grid reported that at 1pm, 24.3% of the country’s electricity demand was met by Solar Power; a new record. In total, 8.7GW of power was generated beating the previous record on 10 May 2017, when 8.48GW was the record.

“This is a colossal achievement … and sends a very positive message to the UK that solar has a strong place in the decarbonisation of the UK energy sector,” said Paul Barwell, chief executive of the Solar Trade Association when talking to The Independent.

This was the first time that solar power has generated more electricity than nuclear with only gas supplying more to the country. It may have been the good weather that produced the results, but the undeniable growth in solar power across the UK is also to thank.

Hannah Martin, Greenpeace UK’s head of energy was very excited about the news saying: “Britain has just hit another milestone in its effort to harness the increasingly cheaper energy coming from the sun…it’s a reminder of what the UK could achieve”.

And Gareth Redmond-King, head of energy and climate at WWF, said: “As we enjoy the sun, it’s great to learn that the UK just hit a new high for solar power generation.

“Solar power and other renewables are getting cheaper and more efficient as we install more of it around the country. And it doesn’t just power our homes, but also our economy”

In April this year, Britain achieved the ground-breaking feat of having its first-ever full working day without the use of coal power thanks to the help of renewable energies like solar power. Government statistics published on Thursday show that UK solar power capacity has grown from 11.3GW in April last year to 12.1GW this year; a rise of 7%. That’s enough energy produced to power 3.8m homes.