Denmark over-producing green energy thanks to strong solar and wind combo

Ben Hamilton
June 13th, 2023

Electric car owners need to get used to charging during the day in the summer, advises Green Power Denmark

More panels equals more green power (photo: Gunnar Bach Pedersen)

Every so often, the Danish media triumphantly reports there was enough wind energy to take care of the entire country’s energy demands. 

And sometimes, not too dissimilar to how a taxi driver might turn off the meter because you scored the winner in a 1976 cup final, we all ride for free.

Well, this past week, wind energy has had to share the laurels with a new supply king: the country’s solar power industry.

There are now so many solar panels in Denmark that wind and sunshine covered 102.1 percent of the country’s electricity consumption on Sunday.

Changing our electric charging habits
Green Power Denmark chief consultant and energy analyst Kristian Rune Poulsen was quick to caution DR that it was only a Sunday: when most companies are not using much power, if any.

A day later, wind and solar power could only account for 85.4 percent of our consumption despite similar weather.

But it could be better consumed, advises Poulsen, if electric car users learn to charge their vehicles when the energy is on tap, instead of the middle of the night. Doing so might save them 50 kroner a charge, he suggests. 

“We can adjust accordingly. We don’t always have to charge the electric car at night; in the summer we have to use electricity in the middle of the day. The same applies to companies,” he said. 

May tends to be the best month
But don’t get too excited about the summer ahead, as May tends to be the optimal month: both for higher winds than we can expect later in the season, and also for producing solar power.

Later in the summer, it can become too hot for the solar cells to optimally produce electricity – because the electronics work better at lower temperatures, and energy is spent on cooling them down.

“Out next step is to focus on storage and flexibility,” concludes Poulsen. 


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