Environmental Engineering Reference
The draft strike price for onshore wind is £100/MWh and £155/MWh for
offshore wind. These prices will run from 2014/2015 (when the first contracts will
be placed) to 2018/2019 (Department of Energy and Climate Change, 2013).
World wind energy capacity doubled every three years from 1990 to 2005. It is
doubtful whether any other energy technology is growing, or has grown, at such a
remarkable rate. Since the turn-of-the-century, the pace has slowed slightly, but
doubling between 2000 and 2012 still occurred every 3.05 years; compound annual
growth rate during that period was 25%. The way in which capacity has built up
during this period is shown in Figure 1.1.
At the end of 2012, the United States had the most wind energy, with 62.2 GW,
followed by China with 60.8 GW, Germany with 31.3 GW and Spain with
22.8 GW. Total world wind turbine capacity at the end of 2012 was 270 GW. Wind
production in Western Denmark in 2012 accounted for about 25% of electricity
consumed. At times, the power output from the wind turbines matches the total
consumption in Jutland.
Offshore wind capacity totals 4,969 MW and at the end of 2012, the United
Kingdom had the highest capacity - 2,679 MW. This is followed by Denmark with
922 MW, Belgium with 380 MW and the Netherlands with 247 MW. Many more
offshore wind farms are planned and if all the capacity targets for 2020 as part of
National Renewable Energy Plans of the EU States are realised, there will be
over 41 GW of offshore wind capacity in the EU by that time. Offshore wind is
significantly more expensive to build than onshore wind, but this is partially offset
by the greater energy productivity that results from higher wind speeds. In addition,
the resource is very large and there are fewer environmental impacts.
Most offshore wind farms have been built in fairly shallow waters, close to
the shore. There are a variety of foundation designs, with 'monopiles' possibly
Development of world wind capacity, 2000-2012