In 2023, electricity production from wind energy exceededproduction from gas power plants in Europe for the first time, contributing to the reduction of carbon emissions, according to new data from the independent institute Ember.
The European Union (EU) is increasing production from renewable sources as part of efforts to wean the bloc off Russian fuel and help meet the climate goal of net zero CO2 emissions by 2050.
Electricity production from fossil fuels fell in 2023 by a record 19 percent compared to 2022, with production from gas-fired power plants reduced by 15 percent and coal by 26 percent, Reuters reports data from the Ember report, the Beta agency reports.
At the same time, production from wind increased by 13 percent and covered 18 percent of the European mix.
”Europe is on the path of gradually phasing out coal and now we have four consecutive years of decline in electricity production from gas and we believe that this will continue,” Ember’s leader Dave Jones told Reuters.
The report showed that the decrease in electricity generation from fossil fuels and the increase from renewable and nuclear energy resulted in a reduction of carbon emissions in the energy sector by 19 percent.
Data show that almost 17 percent of electricity in the EU was produced from gas in 2023, and slightly more than 12 percent from coal.
The largest source of electricity production was nuclear energy, with a share of almost 23 percent, while solar energy provided nine percent, Reuters reported. The total share of electricity from renewable sources in 2023 was a record 44 percent.
The data also show that the demand for electricity in 2023 has decreased by 3.4 percent due to a drop in consumption in industry and mild weather, but Jones expects growth in 2024, as there are more and more products that run on electricity.
”Renewable sources must keep up with the increase in demand in order to achieve the necessary reduced emissions,” said the first man of Ember, Biznis Info writes.