PURE POWER ON THE HORIZON - More than one third of the EU's new electricity generating capacity will be wind power
In its latest report entitled "Pure Power - Wind Energy Scenarios up to 2030", the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) outlines the road towards large-scale wind energy. Presenting three development scenarios for 2010, 2020 and 2030, the report examines in detail the probable impact on electricity, greenhouse gas emissions and the EU economy. It confirms the positive prospects of a technology that last year became the leader in terms of net power capacity additions in the EU (1). Wind power's share of new generating capacity is forecasted to be 34% in the period 2005-2020 and 46% in the decade leading up to 2030. Wind power's share of new capacity in Europe in the 25-year period 2005-2030 is 39% (2).
Wind power has experienced dramatic growth over the past years. It currently meets 3.7% of the EU electricity demand and has ranked second in terms of net power capacity additions over the last eight years (3). This strong development can be maintained, and further reinforced in the coming years, as long as the clear commitment from the European Union and its Member States continues. Swift adoption of the new EU Renewables Energy Directive by the European Parliament and the Council is the key to a strong future development.
Pure Power shows that the European Commission’s goal of increasing wind power's share up to 12-14% by 2020 is within reach. "On average, wind power capacity needs to increase by 9.5 GW per year over the next 13 years to reach 180 GW and meet 12-14% of EU power demand in 2020. This is certainly achievable considering that the EU wind energy capacity increased by 8.5 GW last year" commented Christian Kjaer, EWEA's Chief Executive.
The wind industry target of 180 GW by 2020 (4) is equivalent to supplying the electricity needs of 107 million average EU households. Such penetration level would avoid the emission of 328 Mt of CO₂ —the equivalent to taking 165 million cars off the road—, contribute 44% of the EU greenhouse gases reduction target and avoid yearly fuel costs of €20.5 billion and CO₂ costs of €8.2 billion. It would also create hundreds of thousands jobs.
"In the current context of soaring energy demand, supply constraints, environmental degradation and climate concerns, wind power stands at the forefront in offering immediate and concrete solutions to the benefit of all European citizens" concluded Christian Kjaer.
Note to editors:
EWEA is the voice of the wind industry, actively promoting the utilisation of wind power in Europe and worldwide. It now has 400 members from 40 countries, including manufacturers with a 90% share of the world wind power market, plus component suppliers, research institutes, national wind and renewables associations, developers, contractors, electricity providers, finance and insurance companies and consultants. This combined strength makes EWEA the world’s largest and most powerful wind energy network.
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(1) Net capacity additions/reductions in 2007 (MW)
(2) Wind power's share of new capacity
(3) Evolution in net power capacity (2000-2007, MW):
(4) Summary of the wind industry target for the EU-27 in 2020: