Wind power continues to grow

In 2011 more than 9,600 megawatts of wind power was installed in the European Union, which is an increase in the total capacity by about 10.5 per cent compared to 2010. This marks a slight slowdown in a sector that has grown by about 15 per cent annually in recent years, mostly due to fewer installations in countries that already had a relatively large proportion of wind power, such as France and Spain. This was partly offset by growth in onshore installations in Germany and Sweden, and offshore in the UK.

“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.”

The European leader in wind power is still Germany, with more than 29,000 megawatts installed, followed by Spain with 21,000 megawatts. Altogether 2011 was a good year for renewables, which accounted for 71.3 per cent of all new energy capacity – the highest share so far.

Source: Press release European Wind Energy Association, 6 February 2012

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