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Sweden just broke its wind power record by half a million kWh

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Sweden just broke its wind power record by half a million kWh
A wind farm near Kiruna, northern Sweden. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
15:57 CET+01:00
The powerful winds that hammered Sweden on Tuesday morning set a new all-time wind energy record.

Almost 5.7 million kWh of wind power was generated between 6am and 7am on Tuesday as 'Storm Urd' swept across southern Sweden, a spokesperson for energy provider Bixia told The Local.

That broke the old record, set in December last year, for how much wind power is produced in a single hour by a whopping half million kWh.

“The extremely windy weather in the past few days meant that wind power produced almost as much as six nuclear power plants. Never before has Swedish wind power produced that much,” said Anders Engqvist, head of risk management for Bixia, in a statement released on Tuesday.

Storm Urd hit southern Sweden on Monday evening and only began to subside on Tuesday morning, with hurricane-force winds measured in some places along the west coast according to weather agency SMHI.

In the past three days wind energy has generated 26 percent of Sweden's total energy consumption, said Bixia, which is likely to push down electricity prices in the Nordic country as 2016 draws to an end.

“Yesterday the price of electricity in Sweden was at 22 öre [$0.024]per kWh. The week before the price was 33 öre. In Denmark and Germany the spot prices were negative over the Christmas holidays. If you have a variable price contract your monthly average price will go down,” he said.

IN PICTURES: Storm Urd wreaks havoc in southern Sweden

Sweden generated 16.6 Twh wind-powered electricity in 2015, around 12 percent of the country's total electricity consumption. Because wind power can't be stored the balance is regulated with the help of hydro power plants, which on windy days then produce less energy and instead store water.

“If we look at this morning in Sweden the high wind power production means that hydro power produces less than it normally would have,” Engqvist explained to The Local.

“At the same time it our imports from Norway go down and we instead export to Norway. Sweden imported from Denmark because it was very windy there too, but also in Germany (and Denmark imported in turn from Germany).”

Sweden's wind power is nothing compared to European wind power giant Germany, which generated 85.4 Twh in 2015.

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