UK sixth in global ranking for share of power generated by wind and solar

8th July 2021 | Commercial Energy

Analysis by Ember shows Denmark in the lead with 61% of its power from the renewable technologies, while the UK generated 29% in 2020. The UK has ranked sixth in the world for the share of its electricity it produces from clean wind and solar power, analysis shows.
The assessment revealing the top 15 wind and solar power countries by climate and energy think tank Ember shows Denmark is leading the way, generating 61% of its electricity from the two renewable sources, followed by Uruguay on 44%. The UK comes in sixth in the ranking, behind Ireland, Germany and Spain, generating 29% of its power from wind and solar in 2020.

The ranking comes after Ember’s recent global electricity review which revealed that wind and solar produced almost a 10th of the world’s electricity in 2020, a doubling since 2015 when they generated 5% of global power. In terms of the total amount of electricity generated by wind and solar, China, the EU-27 and the United States lead the way, accounting for two-thirds of global generation from the renewables. Meanwhile, countries such as Vietnam, Chile and South Korea have seen rapid growth in wind and solar generation.

Wind and solar

A recent report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) showed almost two-thirds of wind and solar projects built around the world last year will be able to generate electricity more cheaply than the world’s cheapest new fossil fuel plants.
But the International Energy Agency (IEA) warns that 100% clean power is needed by 2040 worldwide to curb climate emissions to limit temperature rises to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels, seen as a threshold beyond which the worst impacts of climate change will be felt.

In the analysis, Ember warned that building enough wind and solar just to keep up with growing power demand will be a key challenge for many countries, as sectors such as heating and transport switch to using electricity.

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