In 2013 Spain achieved a world first – it became the only country in the world where wind energy was the leading electricity supplier over a whole year. The Spanish electricity system operator, Red Eléctrica de España (REE), reported that wind powered electricity met 20.9% of the country’s power demand, followed by nuclear at 20.8%.
Wind produced 54,478 Gigawatt hours of electricity in 2013 in Spain, a 13.2% increase compared to 2012. Nuclear meanwhile produced 2,377 Gigawatt hours more than wind last year, but its contribution to the power demand was lower because it consumes more electricity than wind farms to run its facilities, the Spanish Wind Energy Association (AEE) explained.
Meanwhile, wind power has also been saving Spaniards money: in 2013 the day on which wind provided its highest levels of coverage of the power demand (2 February 2013), the market price for electricity dropped to €7.69 per Megawatt hour. Conversely, the day on which wind provided its lowest levels of coverage (8 December 2013), the market price climbed to €93.11/MWh.
Next week (10-13 March) the European wind industry’s annual gathering – the EWEA 2014 Annual Event – is taking place in Barcelona. This will be the time to celebrate Spain’s achievements in wind energy and for the wind industry to come together to discuss the issues that the financial and economic crisis has brought – and the ways in which the wind industry can get back to business. Find out how you can attend.