2015 brought 3 GW of new capacity and a € 13 bn investment

Thursday, 4 February, 2016 - 10:15
Share of annual offshore wind capacity installations 2015 per country (MW). (Graphic: EWEA)
Share of annual offshore wind capacity installations 2015 per country (MW). (Graphic: EWEA)

A total of 3,019 MW in new offshore wind capacity came online in European waters in 2015, more than double the capacity connected to the grid in 2014. Offshore wind investments in Europe doubled to € 13.3 billion compared to the previous year.

According to “The European offshore wind industry - key trends and statistics 2015” report released by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA), Europe's total offshore wind capacity was 11,027 MW by the end of 2015. A further 3,034 MW of capacity – spread across ten projects – reached final investment decision last year, a twofold increase on 2014.

Germany (2,282 MW), the United Kingdom (556 MW) and the Netherlands (180 MW) were the three countries to grid-connect new offshore wind turbines in 2015 with 14 projects reaching completion. Work is ongoing on a further six projects in Germany, the UK and the Netherlands, which will contribute an additional 1.9 GW in capacity. Giles Dickson, CEO of EWEA, says: "The 3 GW of new capacity additions is also encouraging though it includes a large backlog of grid connections from 2014, especially in Germany."

You find this current and other reports and studies here.

 

Wind turbine manufacturers’ share of 2015 net annual installations (MW). (Graphic: EWEA)

With a net addition of 754 wind turbines fully grid connected in 2015, the average machine size rose to 4.2 MW from 3.7 MW a year earlier as manufacturers continue to develop larger models with higher energy capture. Siemens continues to be the top offshore wind turbine supplier in terms of net annual installations. With 1,816.4 MW of new capacity connected Siemens accounts for 60 % of the 2015 market. Adwen (550 MW, 18.2 %), MHI Vestas (391.5 MW, 12.9 %) and Senvion (270.6 MW, 8.9 %) are the other turbine manufacturers who had turbines grid-connected in full-scale wind farms during 2015.

Dickson adds: "New capacity additions will be lower in 2016 than 2015 though should then rebound, and we can expect to have over 20 GW offshore wind in Europe by 2020. The real question is what happens after 2020. The industry is making real progress in reducing costs. We need governments to give us a clear vision of the volumes they envisage long term and the regulatory framework they'll apply to drive the necessary investments. Active collaboration between governments is also key: to align their efforts to develop the sector in the North Sea and Baltic." 

Katharina Garus / EWE

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