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Wind energy: over 21% of all new power capacity in 2011 | EU Reporter

2011, 9,616 MW of wind energy capacity was installed in the EU, making a total of 93,957 MW - enough to supply 6.3% of the EU's electricity, according to figures published today by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA).

 Representing 21.4% of new power capacity, wind energy installations in 2011 were very similar to the previous year's 9,648 MW. The wind industry has had an average annual growth of 15.6% over the last 17 years (1995-2011).

"Despite the economic crisis gripping Europe, the wind industry is still installing solid levels of new capacity", commented Justin Wilkes, Policy Director of EWEA.

"But to achieve the EU's long-term targets we need strong growth again in future years. It is critical to send positive signals to investors by European governments maintaining stable policies to support renewables and for the European Union to commit to put in place a binding renewable energy target for 2030."

Growth in onshore installations in Germany and Sweden, and offshore in the UK - together with continuing strong performances from some emerging onshore markets such as Romania - offset a fall in installations in mature markets such as France and Spain.

by Nomad on Mon Feb 6th, 2012 at 03:58:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EWEA is putting a good spin on this year's capacity installations, focusing on long-term cumulative growth, and of course the higher % of demand met by wind. But the simple fact is that both onshore and offshore wind were slightly down from 2010, and significantly down from the 2009 peak.

The factors underlying the unacceptable situation include the financial meltdown, as well as some limitations by transmission constraints, but is primarily due to the unwillingness of most governments to accept that the fastest, cheapest way to increase renewables is to prioritize onshore wind.

Two years into the downturn one can imagine the financial pressure both on the manufacturers and the associated supply chain. Vestas' problems hit the news often (today their annual report release and presentation happens), but global giants Siemens and GE have also been hit hard. Second tier companies like Nordex or REpower the same, but with less capacity to carry over.

Without the overheated market in mainland China, global windpower numbers would be even more down than in Europe.

Think about that the next time your aunt tells you she doesn't want to see industrial technology on her Sunday walk. Please remind her she's still breathing coal dust and mercury.


Let's list the countries down or significantly down (CAPS) from last year (remember their total capacity may be a small part of the EU entire).

BELGIUM, BULGARIA, Cyprus, Czech Rep., DENMARK, FINLAND, FRANCE,  HUNGARY, Lithuania, SPAIN.  

On the surface, the formerly UNITED KINGDOM grew from 1 gigawatt installed to 1.3 gigawatts, but subtract out offshore and Europe's strongest wind resource grew a measly 0.5 gigawatts.



"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin
by Crazy Horse on Tue Feb 7th, 2012 at 03:25:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Some positives:

Percent of Electricity demand met:

Denmark:   25.9%
Spain:         15.9%
Portugal      15.6%
Ireland        12 %
Germany     10.6%

EU total         6.3%

Strong increases:

Austria, Estonia, GERMANY, GREECE, IRELAND, Netherlands (dismal 4% of demand), PORTUGAL, ROMANIA, SWEDEN.  Outside the EU, Norway and Ukraine showed some small gains.

OK, enough procrastination,... for your chart and graph orgasms, EWEA 2011 REPORT

At least 71.4% of all new capacity in Europe was renewable. Be thankful for small favors.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Tue Feb 7th, 2012 at 03:38:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
For anyone who wishes to watch the wind industry in real time, Vestas will release it's annual report for 2011 at 8:30 CET tomorrow. At 14:00, you can call to listen to the presentation and analyst questions during a conference call.

Details Here

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Tue Feb 7th, 2012 at 04:30:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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