Generally speaking, renewable energy is clean and non-polluting, with many forms not emitting any greenhouse gases or toxic waste during the process of creating electricity. Cost-effective and efficient, renewable energy is a sustainable option than can be relied on for the long-term.
That’s why it comes as no surprise that governments around the world are turning to it to end our dependence on fossil fuels. And as it continues to popularize, historic achievements are being made, the latest happening in Portugal.
According to recent numbers released by Portugal’s ZERO System Sustainable Land Association in collaboration with the Portuguese Renewable Energy Association (APREN), the country ran solely on renewable energy for a total of four days this month. This 107-hour run began Saturday morning, May 7, and ended early Wednesday evening, May 11. Solar, wind, and hydro electricity were the renewable sources used during this record-setting event.
“These data show that Portugal can be more ambitious in a transition to a net consumption of electricity from 100 percent renewable, with huge reductions of emissions of greenhouse gases, which cause global warming and consequent climate change,” a statement on the ZERO website read.
This news comes on the tail of other noteworthy national accomplishments, including Germany sourcing 95 percent of its energy from renewable sources on Sunday, May 8, which resulted in local power prices dipping into the negatives. This meant that commercial customers got paid to use up electricity.
Other nations across Europe are also making waves, with Scotland boosting its wind power sector and Austria reporting a successful hydro industry. And in India, solar is becoming the go-to over its traditional coal-based power industry.
Of Portugal’s effort, CEO of SolarPower Europe James Watson Arthur Neslen called it “a significant achievement for a European country, but what seems extraordinary today will be commonplace in Europe in just a few years.” He also told The Guardian
that the “energy transition process is gathering momentum and records such as this will continue to be set and broken across Europe.”
These monumental changes are making it possible for the world to source over a quarter of its energy requirements from renewables by the end of the decade.