Wind record blown away

LAST UPDATED: 24 Nov, 2010 @ 11:06
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Wind record blown away

MORE than half of Spain´s electricity was generated by wind turbines for several hours this weekend – equivalent to the output of eleven nuclear plants.

The national record – set only days earlier – was blown away thanks to the high winds that swept across the country.

For some five hours on Sunday morning, wind farms were producing 11.5 gigawatts of energy – 53 per cent of the country’s total output.

Just five years ago, critics warned that the Spanish grid could not support more than 14 per cent of its supply being generated by wind turbines.

However, last weekend the huge boom meant that the national grid had an excess of supply.

“We think that we can keep growing and go from the present 17GW megawatts to reach 40GW in 2020,” Jose Donaso, head of the Spanish Wind Energy Association, told El Pais newspaper.

It is estimated that a quarter of all energy produced in Spain is renewable, with wind topping the list, followed by hydroelectric power and solar energy.

The country is home to the world’s third largest quantity of wind farms, behind the United States and Germany.

The record-breaking feat comes as the UK government approves ten sites in England and Wales for the construction of new nuclear power stations.

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