UK electricity demand declines – COVID19 effect or a broader indicator of a flat-lining economy

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The dramatic decline in electricity usage in the UK underlines the scale of the economic downturn. Since March 7th, the UK’s electricity usage has been continually below the 5 year minimum and in the week of April 11th to 18th up to 100GW off the 5 year minimum and around 150GW off the 5 year average.

The ICAEW has provided an analysis looking at the 5 year average data between February and April this year, which can be accessed here…

While this is reflective of the economic impact of closures to business due to COVID19, we must also factor in seasonal and weather factors. The reduced electricity production has also lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions for the share produced from fossil fuels.

ICAEW notesĀ “a silver lining to the current situation is a significant reduction in carbon emissions, with zero electricity generated from coal or oil power plants in recent weeks. Gas-fired power stations are currently providing only around 20% of UK energy supply, with wind, solar and hydropower together providing in the order of 50% each day.”

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