On Sunday, August 14, Scotland's wind turbines created more than enough energy to power the country for the day, reports Fast Company writer Charlie Sorrel.
The windy day produced 39,545 megawatt-hours (MWh) of electricity, while the country’s entire consumption--including homes, factories, and businesses--was only 37,202 MWh. However, the success can be attributed to a particularly windy weather day in Scotland. Sixty-mile-per-hour winds were felt in the cities while the country side reached a blowy 115 mph on high ground. But even on a more normal day, renewables now account for more than half of Scotland’s power.
Even considering the circumstances—a particularly blustery Sunday—Scotland’s achievement proves that renewables are a practical alternative to burning fossil fuels. And Scotland is also doing well with private solar. In May this year, homes fitted with solar panels were able to power themselves 100%, providing all their electricity and hot water needs. Private solar installations also lower demand on the grid, which makes 100% wind power an even closer goal. And if Scotland can manage to power its homes with sunlight, then imagine the potential for somewhere that actually gets good weather.