Tuesday 26 September 2017

Fossil fuels fall as wind power surges

Some 50pc of our electricity comes from wind turbines
Some 50pc of our electricity comes from wind turbines
Sarah McCabe

Sarah McCabe

The cost of wholesale oil, gas, coal and electricity fell in December as wind energy provided a record amount of electricity.

The latest Bord Gais Energy Index -- which tracks price movements for fossil fuels -- declined by 1pc in the month. It was down 2pc compared with December 2012.

The index usually foreshadows the cost of energy for consumers, since retail power prices are determined months in advance.

A fall in wholesale electricity prices was the principal driver of the decline, largely driven by wind energy. Wind-generated electricity met a record 24pc of the total demand in December.

This, combined with a reduction in electricity demand due to the mild weather, resulted in wholesale electricity prices dropping by 5pc month-on-month.

"The topline decrease of 1pc in the index masks some substantial changes during the month," said John Heffernan, a gas and power trader at Bord Gais Energy.

Irish Independent

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