Jul 10 2015

Denmark Meets 140% of National Electricity Demand From Wind

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Middelgrunden Wind Farm, Denmark. Photo by Max Mudie.

Middelgrunden Wind Farm, Denmark. Photo by Max Mudie.

 

Thursday, July 9, was a special day for Denmark, a day that could show the world the true potential of renewable energy sources. On what reporters are calling “an unusually windy day,” Denmark’s wind farms produced a staggering 140% of the national electricity demand, enough to supply the entire country and sell the excess to Germany, Sweden, and Norway.

 

Denmark has led the world in wind energy production for some time now, and looks to reach its goal of generating 50% of the national electricity demands from various renewable energy sources by the year 2020, a goal it is well on the way to fulfilling. In January of this year, Denmark celebrated a new world record by generating 39.1% of the national electricity demand from wind energy alone for the 2014 year.

 

“It shows that a world powered 100% by renewable energy is no fantasy,” commented Oliver Joy this morning. Joy, a spokesperson from the European Wind Energy Association, went on to say that “wind energy and renewables can be a solution to decarbonization.”

 

Denmark's Groundbreaking Wind Production. Data from EnergiNet.DK

Denmark’s Groundbreaking Wind Production. Data from EnergiNet.DK

 

The figure above comes from EnergiNet.DK, a non-profit organization owned by the Danish Climate and Energy Ministry. The website shows a real time look at Denmark’s power grid and energy sources. The figure data, taken Thursday at 10:44 PM local time, shows the energy coming in from the country’s wind turbines alone (3.7 GW) was supplying 116% of the national electricity demand, and by 3AM Friday, that number would rise to 140%. With international cables already in place, Denmark was able to sell the excess power to nearby Germany (40%), Norway (40%), and Sweden (20%), around 1 GW of power.

 

Government officials at the Danish Ministry of Climate, Energy, and Building believe the country could generate 71% of the national electricity demand by the year 2020, and hope to be fossil fuel-free by 2050. Even if these predictions are a little lofty, Denmark is showing the world that they truly are the leaders of wind energy.

 

References

1. Nelson A. Wind power generates 140% of Denmark’s electricity demand. 10 July 2015. The Guardian online. Accessed 10 July 2015. Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/10/denmark-wind-windfarm-power-exceed-electricity-demand

2. Phillips A. Denmark Sets World Record For Wind Power Production. 7 January 2015. Climate Progress. Accessed 10 July 2015. Available at: http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/01/07/3608898/denmark-sets-world-record-for-wind-power/

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