U.K. DECC: Bioenergy generation increased during first quarter

By Erin Voegele | August 21, 2015

The U.K. Department of Energy and Climate Change has published updated renewable energy statistics, reporting the renewable share of electricity generation reached a record 22.3 percent during the first quarter of this year, up 2.6 percent when compared to the same quarter of last year.

According to the DECC, renewable electricity generation was 21.1 TWh during the first quarter, up 15 percent from 18.4 TWh during the same quarter of the prior year. Renewable energy capacity reached 26.4 GW at the close of the first quarter, up 23 percent from one year earlier. Bioenergy accounted for 17 percent, or 4.6 GW, of renewable capacity.

Generation from bioenergy increased from 4.6 TWh during the first quarter of last year to 6.7 TWh during the first quarter of this year, with the majority from plant biomass. The increase is primarily attributed to the second conversion at Drax Power Station from cofiring to dedicated biomass. According to the DECC, plant biomass showed the highest increase in both absolute and percentage change in generation during the first quarter increasing from 2.2 TWh during the first quarter of 2014 to 4.3 TWh during the first quarter of this year.

Onshore wind had the highest share of renewable generation during the first quarter, at 33 percent. Bioenergy was a close second, at 32 percent. In addition, 22 percent of renewable generation came from offshore wind, 9.5 percent from hydro and 3.6 percent from solar photovoltaic.

Regarding capacity, the DECC reports landfill gas accounted for 1.05 GW of capacity at the close of the second quarter, while sewage sludge digestion accounted for 0.21 GW of capacity. Energy from waste capacity was 0.7 GW, with capacity from animal biomass (non-anaerobic digestion) was 0.11 GW. Capacity from anaerobic digestion was 0.22 GW, with capacity from plant biomass reaching 2.27 GW. Cofiring also accounted for 0.02 GW of capacity.

Landfill gas accounted for 1,189 GWh of generation during the first quarter, while sewage sludge digestion accounted for 204 GWh. Energy from waste generation reached 501 GWh, with cofiring at 41 GWh. Generation from animal waste (non-anaerobic digestion) was 166 GWh, while generation from anaerobic digestion reached 273 GWh. Generation from plant biomass was 4,322 GWh.