Portugal has set a new renewable energy milestone as it ran entirely on hydro, wind and solar power for approximately 107 hours straight during the second week of May, officials confirmed.
The Portuguese Renewable Energy Association, together with the ZERO-System Sustainable Land Association, analyzed data and determined that from 06:45 AM on May 7 up to 05:45 PM on May 11, the country's energy use was covered by clean energy sources.
According to the World Economic Forum, Portugal has been building up its clean energy sources for the past few years.
Three years ago, the country was generating only 7.5 percent of electricity from wind energy. In 2015, the capacity extended to 22 percent.
Together with other renewable energy sources, these became the source for almost half or about 48 percent of the country's energy for 12 months.
Although Portugal's surging clean energy has been encouraged by the European Union's renewable targets for 2020, support schemes for wind capacity were lessened in 2012, according to The Guardian.
Still, the country added 550 MW of wind capacity just between 2013 and 2016. Industry groups have set their sights on the green energy export's potential.
A Growing Trend
Portugal's landmark use of renewable energy is not isolated. Germany announced clean energy had powered almost all of its electricity on May 15 as power prices turned negative at different times in the day.
Oliver Joy of Wind Europe Trade Association said they have been seeing trends of renewable energy use spread across Europe. He said the Iberian Peninsula is a strong reserve for wind energy and other renewable sources across the continent.
Last year, Denmark set a world record when 42 percent of its electricity were harnessed from wind power. This even beat the country's own record in 2014, when it generated 39 percent of its energy through wind turbines.
Many other countries around the world are switching to renewable energy sources, especially as the landmark Paris climate deal is set in place.
Data from the Energy Information Administration revealed that 16 countries have already hit 100 percent renewable energy production.
Officials in Costa Rica reported in 2015 that the country managed to power its grid on 100 percent renewable sources for more than 285 days. Iceland has achieved 100 percent renewable energy, while Norway reached 98 percent. Uruguay is at a close 95 percent.
Photo: Paulo Valdivieso | Flickr