Global Energy Review 2020
The impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on global energy demand and CO2 emissions
IEA (2020), Covid-19 impact on electricity, IEA, Paris https://www.iea.org/reports/covid-19-impact-on-electricity
In light of the extraordinary impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and resulting lockdown measures on the energy system, the IEA is publishing the most up-to-date possible electricity data. This report includes data through 11 May, 2020. It will be updated on 4 June with data through 25 May.
Electricity demand dropped to Sunday levels under lockdown, with dramatic reductions in services and industry only partially offset by higher residential use. In several countries where confinement measures have been eased, electricity demand is showing the first signs of recovering in April. This trend is confirmed in the first days of May, as more countries soften lockdown measures.
|First lockdown measures (day 0)||Lockdown strengthened||Lockdown softened||France||March 14||March 17 (day 3)||May 11 (day 55)|
|Germany||March 15||March 22 (day 7)||April 20 (day 36) and May 4 (day 50)|
|Italy||March 4||March 13 (day 9)||April 14 (day 41) and May 4 (day 61)|
|Spain||March 9||March 15 (day 6)||May 11 (day 55, not yet shown)|
|UK||March 19||March 23 (day 4)||May 11 in England (day 55, not yet shown)|
|India||March 18||March 25 (day 7)||May 4 (day 47)|
Across all major regions, the power mix has shifted towards renewables following lockdown measures due to depressed electricity demand, low operating costs and priority access to the grid through regulations.
In India, the gap between coal and renewables has narrowed significantly. In the United States, natural gas has remained the leading source of electricity, while renewables have far outpaced the contribution of coal-fired power plants.
Two weeks into May, renewables have consolidated their second position after natural gas and way above coal, in the US. The share of coal in the Indian electricity mix stays consistently under 70%. With progressive release of lockdown measures in China starting in the second half of March, the coal share recovers slightly, while renewables maintain a higher share in the mix.
In the EU, nuclear and coal are adjusting to lower electricity demand and growing renewables availability.
The share of variable renewables in the electricity mix depends on many factors: wind and solar parks in operation, weather conditions, and total demand. In several EU countries, in particular Italy and Spain, new records have been reached during the lockdown period.
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