EU's five biggest energy markets add 8GW to wind and solar capacity
Europe's five biggest energy markets have added 8GW of wind and solar capacity in the first half of 2015, a new report has found.
The wind and solar capacities of the UK, Germany, Italy, France and Spain have grown to a combined total of around 175GW, according to Platts Renewable Power Tracker.
Germany added around 2.9GW of wind power in the first six months of 2015, with around 1.8GW of this coming from German North Sea wind farms.
The UK’s installed capacity of solar energy reached 7.7GW, as well as reaching 13.4GW of wind energy. The UK’s combined renewable energy output generated 2.7TWh of energy, according to Platts.
Wind and sun
Unseasonably high winds throughout the summer in Northern Europe and a heatwave around the Mediterranean helped to drive an average of a 25% increase in renewable energy generation in July, according to Platts.
German solar and wind energy outputs hit an all-time high, generating around 11TWh in July and increasing wind output by around 156% year on year.
In the UK, a wet and windy July led to high renewable energy generation in Scotland, with wind turbines powering 72% of Scottish households and generating 660,000MWh of electricity.
Renewable energy generation in the UK has recently hit new highs, generating 19% of the UK’s total electricity requirements. The increase in generation has been driven by developments of wind power, biomass and solar, with the UK’s offshore wind capacity passing 5GW in June this year.
Despite this increase in capacity and generation, renewable energy industry leaders have warned the sector is at risk of being "killed off" by recent changes by the Government to subsidies for renewable energy.