Renewable energy sources met more than 23% of the UK’s electricity needs in the latest quarter, according to the latest official figures.

The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) said that renewables generated 23.5% of Britain’s electricity output during the July to September quarter. During the same period, coal’s output slumped from 21% to 17% while gas fell from 38% to 35%.

Renewables’ share of the energy mix climbed by six percentage points compared with the previous year.

New statistics from National Grid also showed that 2015 was a record year for wind energy generation, with onshore and offshore wind farms generating 11% of the UK’s electricity last year – up from 9.5% in 2014.
 
Wind provided enough electricity to meet the annual needs of more than 8.25 million homes – more than 30% of UK households - up from 6.7 million homes last year.

‘More installations means cheaper energy’

Maf Smith, Deputy Chief Executive at trade body RenewableUK, said: “These figures show that the wind industry is continually upping its contribution of clean electricity to British homes, offices and factories.

“Wind energy is a success story which the 35,000 people who this work in this industry in the UK are proud to be a part of.
“The more we install, the cheaper the clean electricity we generate becomes.”

Renewables now main source of power in Scotland

Data from DECC also showed that renewables are now Scotland’s main source of power, generating a record 49.7% of electricity output during 2014.

But Joss Blamire, Senior Policy Manager at trade body Scottish Renewables, warned: “While we are now almost half way to our 2020 goal of producing the equivalent of 100% of our electricity from renewables, the second half of the target is going to be much harder to achieve than the first.

“To see further progress, both the UK and Scottish Governments must now put renewables at the heart of their energy policy in terms of cutting carbon emissions, reducing bills for consumers and increasing our energy security.”

> Download the figures