03 February 2022

Electricity consumption drops in January, hindered by above-normal temperatures

The consumption of electricity dropped 6.7% year-on-year in January, hindered by the above average temperatures recorded in the first month of the year, which were against the unseasonably low temperatures recorded in the same period in 2021. Correcting for the effects of temperature and number of working days, there was a 1.4% decrease.

With reduced precipitation, conditions remained negative for hydropower production, with its corresponding capability factor standing at 0.34 (historical average of 1). Wind generation was also below average, with its corresponding capability factor standing at 0.94 (historical average of 1), with the solar capability factor, on the contrary, recording an especially high value of 1.39 (historical average of 1).  Renewable generation supplied 52% of consumption, with wind power standing out with 27%, followed by hydropower with 16%, a low figure for this time of year, biomass with 6%, and photovoltaics with 3.3%. Photovoltaics more than doubled their generation, when compared to January of the previous year, with daily peaks already close to 1,000 MW. Non-renewable generation supplied 31% of consumption, provided by natural gas power plants. The import balance supplied the remaining 17%.<

Consumption of natural gas recorded a year-on-year decrease of 4.7% in January. Driven by the low availability of renewable energy and the disappearance of coal-fired generation this year, the conventional segment dropped by 28%, unlike the electric sector, which grew by 54%. This was the highest January consumption ever for electricity generation, at 2,619 GWh, up from 2,564 GWh in 2020.


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