A new EWEA report shows how wind energy can contribute very substantially to achieving the EU’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80-95% by 2050. The EWEA report sets out targets for the amount of wind power the industry expects to be able to deliver in 2020, 2030 and 2050.
It aims to provide European policy makers with a clear understanding of the significant contribution wind energy can make in terms of energy security, CO2 reductions and employment, ahead of the publication of the European Commission’s 2050 Energy Roadmap, due in the autumn.
The report shows that by 2020 most EU countries will have at least tripled their wind power capacity reaching a total installed capacity of 230 GW – providing 15.7% of EU electricity depending on demand. 190 GW would be onshore and 40GW offshore. By the end of 2010, 84 GW of wind energy capacity was operating in Europe, meeting 5.3% of EU power demand.
By 2030 EWEA expects 400 GW of wind to be operating in the EU providing 28.5% of EU electricity depending on demand. 250 GW would be onshore and 150 GW offshore. The report also shows that wind power could provide 50% of the EU electricity supply by 2050.
“The European Wind Energy Association expects that Eur194 billion will be invested in European onshore and offshore wind farms in this decade, mainly driven by a strong EU regulatory framework to 2020,” says Christian Kjaer, chief executive of EWEA. “Annual wind power investments in the EU will double from Eur13 billion in 2010 to Eur27 billion in 2020. This will make a very substantial contribution to meeting Europe’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions within the short timeframe provided by the scientific community.”
He continues: “However, EU policy uncertainty is substantial for the period after 2020. An early commitment to binding renewable energy targets in 2030 would provide industry with the necessary stability, and certainty to invest in job creation while sending a strong signal about the future redesign of Europe’s electricity infrastructure.”