EU wind power marches on with Danes and Germans at the helm

The march of the wind turbines continues in the European Union, with the total wind power capacity growing more than a tenth (12.3%) last year. Total wind capacity in the […]

By Vicky Ellis

The march of the wind turbines continues in the European Union, with the total wind power capacity growing more than a tenth (12.3%) last year.

Total wind capacity in the region “breezed past” 100 GW in 2012, the statistics from EU-backed research group Eur’Observ’ER show.

Denmark leads the country for wind power per person charts – with 745.8kW for every 1,000 Danes – followed by Spain and Portugal, with 488.8kW and 429.2kW per 1,000 inhabitants respectively. The EU’s average per 1,000 people stands at 209.7kW.

The UK installed the third largest amount of wind power capacity out of the EU countries last year with more than 8,000 MW worth of turbines put up, behind the Germans with more than 31,000 and Spain which installed around 22,000.

Ex-pat hotspot Malta was the only EU country which installed no turbines, while just above the bottom of the wind power league table Slovenia and Slovakia each installed tiny amounts of wind power (2.3MW and 3.1MW).

The “build-up” of British offshore wind installations should push up the EU’s wind energy production past the 200TwH threshold, stated the report.

Compared with a total wind power of 94 GW at close of play in 2011, the EU’s countries had 105.6 GW by the end of 2012. Out of this total, 4% of the wind power is located offshore, equalling 10% of the EU 2012 market.

Europe accounted for nearly a third (28.7%) of the global wind turbine market last year, just shy of North America (31.8%) and Asia’s market leading share with 35.6%.