Germany sets solar generation record as burning heatwave sweeps across Europe

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The fierce heatwave being seen across western Europe has boosted solar generation at the expense of other renewables. Image: SunPower

Germany generated a record amount of power from solar PV on Sunday, with this expected to be repeated over the coming days amid a fierce heatwave across western Europe, according to Bloomberg.  

The news site reported that Germany produced more than 38,174MW of solar PV on Sunday, with another record expected on Tuesday when generation could reach 38,190MW.

This was up from around 32,000MW on Saturday. No day’s generation has surpassed the 35,000MW mark in German over the past year according to data from the European Energy Exchange (EEX), with the next closest point a freak European heatwave in March.

According to data from EEX, today’s (18 July) solar generation peaked at 34,222MW at 12pm in Germany, below its forecast of 34,352MW.

A devastating heatwave is currently making its way across the west of Europe with wildfires reported across large parts of France and Spain, while the UK looks set to record its highest ever temperature on Tuesday of more than 40 degrees Celsius.

Temperatures in Germany are expected to peak on Tuesday or Wednesday, with the warm air also causing wind power generation to fall. This has led to Germany’s power prices rising to €396.07/MWh (US$400.27/MWh), which Bloomberg said was the highest since March on the European Power Exchange spot market.

Even though European power purchase agreement (PPA) prices have surged by a staggering 47% year-on-year as the continent’s energy crisis persists, they still “remain attractive” due to wholesale electricity prices continuing to be stubbornly high.

With already more than one-third of the European Union’s installed solar capacity, Germany is set to supercharge PV deployment in the coming decade as the recently elected coalition government seeks to accelerate the decarbonisation of the country’s electricity sector while lowering energy imports.

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