Renewable energies overtook fossil fuels as the EU’s main source of electricity for the first time in 2020.
Renewable energies generated 38% of electricity in Europe, surpassing 37% of the market generated by fossil fuels.
The study revealed that Europe’s electricity is 29% cleaner than in 2015. This is according to a new study “The European Power Sector in 2020” conducted by Think tanks Ember and Agora Energiewende.
The data now revealed was driven by the generation of wind and solar energy that has almost doubled since 2015 to supply 20% of the EU’s electricity in 2020. The largest wind and solar energy shareholdings occurred in Denmark (61%), Ireland ( 35%), Germany (33%), and Spain (29%).
In contrast, coal-fired power has fallen sharply since 2015. In 2020, coal generation dropped by 20% to supply just 13% of Europe’s electricity. By comparison, gas generation dropped by just 4% in 2020. A robust carbon price meant that gas generation was the cheapest form of fossil fuel generation.
Electricity demand in Europe fell by 4% in 2020, reaching minimum levels in April at the peak of COVID-19 blockades. The increase in renewable energies was “robust” despite the pandemic, while the fall in fossil fuels was limited by a below average recovery in demand and nuclear generation.