Canary Island keeps breaking renewable energy records

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WIND POWER: The Gorona del Viento turbines on El Hierro.Credit: Carlos Teixidor Cadenas/Wikimedia Commons


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EL HIERRO – the smallest of the Canary Islands – has gone 24 days in a row using 100 per cent renewable power.

To be precise it relied on natural elements for all its power needs (excluding transport) for 596.3 hours between July 13 and August 7. The previous record was 18 days between July 15 and August 2, 2018.

Red Electrica de Espana (REE) which manages the electricity grid says that so far this year the island’s power supply has gone 1,119.56 hours without needing to resort to fossil fuels.

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The island relies largely on the Gorona del Viento wind power-based pumped-hydro system. This uses five wind turbines rated at a total 11.5 MW to pump water into a reservoir which is used as a hydro-electricity generating facility.

In 2014 the island’s renewables share was just 2.2 per cent. This was immediately raised to 19.5 per cent in 2015 when the Gorona del Viento facility was brought online. This share has been growing steadily, and by the end of 2018 it stood at 56.5 per cent.

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