Energy market analysts, EnAppSys, have released Q3 2019 market summaries for both the European and UK markets. Take a look at the noteworthy trends summarized below:

EU sees sizeable shift from coal to gas

  • The European electricity market saw a significant shift from coal to gas-fired generation in Q3 of 2019, reversing a trend seen in the previous two years.
  • Coal and lignite plants produced 95.8 TWh of power in the three months to September 30 – 41 per cent less than the 134.6T Wh generated by gas plants.
  • In Spain, coal has been pushed almost entirely out the market by gas, whilst Germany has seen significant reductions in levels of generation from coal and lignite.

Read more about Germany’s exit from coal

  • Renewables provided 35 per cent share of overall power generation in Q3 2019, although growth has stalled with output declining 2 per cent from levels seen in the corresponding quarters in 2017 and 2018.
  • The Czech Republic continues to rely on lignite and coal sources without the same ability to switch as Greece and Italy.
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  • Nuclear was the dominant power source in Europe in the three months to the end of September 2019, providing 28.7 per cent of total generation.

Jean-Paul Harreman, director of EnAppSys BV, said: “Generally there has been a significant shift in Europe from coal/ lignite generation to gas-fired generation, although the picture varies depending on individual countries where the degree of change depends on the ability to switch from one power source to the other.

UK sees renewable close the gap on fossil fuels

  • Power outages at Dungeness B and Hunterston nuclear plants prompted increased levels of generation from gas, which prevented renewables from taking the dominant share of power generation over the three-month period for the first time.
  • During the July-September period, renewables output reached 24.4 TWh, closing the gap on fossil fuels at 25.1 TWh which included 0.4 TWh from coal-fired stations.
  • Wind farm operators continue to benefit from the ongoing commissioning of new projects, with a steady stream of offshore wind farms coming online.
  • Renewable output climbed 5 per cent from the previous quarter and 13 per cent from Q3 2018
  • Nuclear generation dropped 20 per cent from Q3 2018 to 12.8 TWh.

Paul Verrill, director of EnAppSys, said: “Britain’s power generation figures during the third quarter continued the trend of previous periods and it is now only a matter of time before renewables overtake fossil fuels as the dominant source of power.”

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