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PaulS's picture

53% of Spain's electricity by wind

Spain's windfarms set new national record for electricity generation

High winds over the weekend supplied 53% of Spain's electricity – equivalent to the power output of 11 nuclear plants

At one stage on Sunday morning, the country's wind farms were able to cover 53% of total electricity demand – a new record in a country that boasts the world's third largest array of wind turbines, after the United States and Germany.

For more than five hours on Sunday morning output from wind power was providing more than half of the electricity being used. At their peak, wind farms were generating 11.5 gigawatts, or two-thirds of their theoretical maximum capacity of almost 18GW.

The new record, which beat a 44 % level set earlier last week, came as strong winds battered the Iberian peninsula.

The massive output of wind turbines meant the Spanish grid had more electricity than was needed over the weekend. In previous years similar weather has forced windfarms to turn turbines off but now the spare electricity is exported or used by hydroelectric plants to pump water back into their dams — effectively storing the electricity for future use.

full article here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/nov/09/spain-national-record-...