Offshore wind investments grow ‘colossally’ in first half of 2020

Offshore wind financings in the first half of 2020 totalled $35bn up 319% year-on-year, according to a new report

Investments in the offshore wind sector experienced ‘colossal’ growth in the first six months of the year, despite the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

That’s according to the latest report by research company Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), which suggests offshore wind financings in the first half of 2020 totalled $35 billion (£27.8bn), up 319% year-on-year and higher than 2019’s record full-year figure of almost $32 billion (£25.4bn).

The data also shows the first six months of the year saw investment decisions made for 28 offshore wind farms, including the ‘largest ever’ 1.5GW Vattenfall Hollandse Zuid project off the coast of the Netherlands, costing $3.9 billion (£3.1bn).

Findings of the report also estimate overall investment in new renewable energy capacity was $132.4 billion (£105.4bn) in the first semester, up 5% from the same period of 2019.

Onshore wind investment slipped 21% to $37.5 billion (£29.8bn), while solar fell 12% to $54.7 billion (£43.5bn) – the report also shows investment in new biomass and waste-to-energy plants fell 34%, while geothermal jumped 594%.

Tom Harries, Head of Wind Analysis, said: “Offshore wind is benefitting from the 67% reduction in levelised costs achieved since 2012 and to the performance of the latest, giant turbines.

“But the first half of this year also owed a lot to a rush in China to finance and build, in order to take advantage of a feed-in tariff before it expires at the end of 2021.”

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