Global wind power installation is expected to touch 800GW by 2021 from 490GW, led by Asian economies like China and India, says a new report released on Tuesday by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC). The Global Wind Report: Annual Market Update, released in Delhi, said more than 54GW of clean renewable wind power was installed across the global market in 2016, which now comprises more than 90 countries, including nine with more than 10,000MW installed, and 29 which have now passed the 1,000MW mark. “Cumulative capacity grew by 12.6% to reach a total of 486.8GW,” the report added. The report said wind power penetration levels continue to increase, led by Denmark, pushing 40%, followed by Uruguay, Portugal and Ireland with well over 20%, Spain and Cyprus around 20% and Germany at 16%. China, the US and Canada get 4%, 5.5%, and 6% of their power from wind, respectively.
“GWEC’s rolling five year forecast sees almost 60GW of new wind installations in 2017, rising to an annual market of about 75GW by 2021, to bring cumulative installed capacity of over 800GW by the end of 2021,” the report said. It also emphasized that “growth will be led by Asia”. “China will continue to lead all markets, but India set a new record for installations this past year and has a real shot to meet the government’s very ambitious targets for the sector; and there are a number of exciting new markets in the region with great potential,” the report added. The report stressed that Europe’s steady if unspectacular march towards its 2020 targets has been given a big boost by the year’s most exciting new development—the dramatic price reductions for offshore wind.
“Europe will continue to lead the offshore market, but the low prices have attracted the attention of policymakers worldwide, particularly in North America and Asia,” it added. It also predicted that Africa will have a big year in 2017, led by Kenya, South Africa and Morocco, and the future of wind on the continent looks bright. The Australian market also looks to come roaring back with a strong pipeline of projects to be built out over the next few years, it added. “Wind power is now successfully competing with heavily subsidized incumbents across the globe, building new industries, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs and leading the way towards a clean energy future. We need to get to a zero emissions power system well before 2050 if we are to meet our climate change and development goals,” said GWEC secretary general Steve Sawyer. “Offshore wind has had a major price breakthrough in the past year, and looks set to live up to the enormous potential that many have believed in for years. We see the technology continuing to improve and spread beyond its home base in Europe in the next 5-10 years,” Sawyer added.