Renewable energy accounted for 55.8% of Germany's net electricity generation across the first half of 2020, according to new figures published Wednesday by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE). The record first half of 2020 included a new monthly high record of 61.8% renewables, set in February.
Across the first six months of 2020, renewable energy dominated. Solar and wind electricity generation fed a total of 102.9TWh into Germany's public electricity grid – up 11.5% on the same six months a year earlier. Wind energy was particularly dominant in Germany's electricity grid, generating 30.6% of the total net generated electricity.
In contrast, coal-fired power generation fell dramatically across the same period, with the share of electricity generated by lignite falling to 13.7% and hard coal down to only 6%.
Germany's new electricity generation paradigm was definitely affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic, with "noticeably lower demand for electricity" beginning in the second quarter "due to the decline in industrial production", according to Fraunhofer ISE.
Collectively, electricity consumption for the first six months of 2020 was only 234.2TWh, a dramatic 5% drop from 245.7TWh recorded during the first six months of 2019. Electricity production across the same period fell by 8% from 265.5TWh across the first six months of 2019 down 21.7TWh to 243.8TWh across the first six months of 2020.
Despite such dramatic falls in both consumption and production, renewable electricity generation nevertheless grew, resulting in fossil fuel generation bearing the brunt of the decline. Together, renewable energy sources of wind, solar, hydro, and biomass, generated approximately 136.1TWh of electricity across the first half of 2020 as compared to 125.6TWh a year earlier.
(Writing by Becky Du Editing by Tammy Yang)
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