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Wind power's significant contribution to peak demand rises
1 October 2006
Wind power contributed nearly 13% of Spain's average electricity consumption during the first half of August, putting paid to the myth that wind farms rarely produce power when it is needed most, which is in the summer. With air conditioners whirring, demand reached 10,057 GWh, with wind supplying 1305 GWh. Over a run of seven days during August 4-10, wind penetration never fell below 15% of national load. It peaked on August 12 at an average of 17.8% over the day and when peak demand hit just under 30 GWh at around 19:00 hours, wind was meeting 17.95% of customers' requirements. Spain's second largest operator of wind plant, Acciona, was the first to draw attention to the significant volumes of electricity being provided by wind. They "clearly illustrate the strong potential" of wind power to cover "a considerable part of electricity demand" while also providing "significant stability to the electricity system," said Acciona. During the period, wind power avoided EUR 57.6 million in oil imports and the emission of 685,000 tons of CO2.
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