The European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) reports that more than 1 GW in new installed capacity was fully grid connected in the first six months of 2013 – doubling the rate for the same period in 2012.
‘Offshore wind power installations were significantly higher than in the first six months of last year,’ says Justin Wilkes, EWEA's director of policy. ‘But financing of new projects has slowed down with only one project reaching financial close so far this year.Â 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 U.K. It highlights the significant challenges faced by the offshore wind sector.
‘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,’ Wilkes continues.
According to EWEA, grid-connected turbines were from Thornton Bank, Gunfleet Sands 3, Lincs, London Array, Teesside, Anholt and BARD offshore 1. Total offshore capacity in Europe is now at 6,040 MW in 58 wind farms across 10 countries – up from 4,336 MW in June 2012.
Twenty-one offshore wind farms are under construction or in preparation, with a total capacity of 5,694 MW.