European wind capacity doubles, led by the UK

15 July 2013

LONDON: Double the capacity of new offshore wind turbines were fully grid-connected in Europe in the first half of 2013 in comparison to last year, according to new data from industry experts European Wind Energy Association.

227 new offshore wind turbines were connected in the first six months of 2013, boosting Europe’s total wind capacity to 1,045 megawatts for the period. This is double the 523.2 megawatts that was installed in the first half of 2012.

Of the newly grid-connected turbines in the flush six months, most were in the UK:

  Number of turbines connected MW fully connected to the grid
Belgium 12 73.8
Denmark 98 352.8
Germany 21 105
UK 146 513.5
Total 277 1,045.1

Currently total offshore capacity in Europe sits at 6,040 megawatts from 58 wind farms, compared to 4,336 megawatts in June, 2012.

Capacity is set to continue climbing too, as there are wind turbines with a combined total capacity of 5,694 megawatts waiting to be constructed across Europe.

Justin Wilkes, Director of Policy, EWEA, warned that while the data looks promising, challenges remain for Europe's wind industry: "Offshore wind power installations were significantly higher than in the first six months of last year. But financing of new projects has slowed down with only one project reaching financial close so far this year. This, together with a lack of orders being placed for offshore wind turbines, substructures and components, reflects the regulatory uncertainty in key offshore markets including Germany and the UK. It highlights the significant challenges faced by the offshore wind sector.”

He added: "Offshore wind is a new industry that creates jobs, reduces fossil fuel imports and in which Europe is a world leader with huge export opportunities. The installation rate shows what the European offshore wind industry is now capable of. But to attract investment to the sector, governments need to provide a stable regulatory framework and the EU should set a binding renewable target for 2030".

Read the EWEA 2013 data

Related news:

The world's largest offshore wind farm formally opened by David Cameron in UK

IKEA opens new wind farm in Poland

Record wind capacity added worldwide in 2012, led by Asia

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