February 6 (Renewables Now) - The Americas region added 11.9 GW of wind power capacity last year and is expected to experience a significant expansion between 2019 and 2023, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) said on Tuesday.
According to GWEC, annual wind power deployments in the Americas will lead to the commissioning of 60 GW in the next five years.
“The North American wind market is one of the most mature and competitive in the wind industry. Many learnings and experiences from the success here can be used in other markets,” said Ben Backwell, CEO of GWEC. Meanwhile, Karin Ohlenforst, director of market intelligence, noted that the region, particularly South America, proves “how wind is competitive in auction markets.” According to GWEC’s data, North, Central and South America were responsible for about 25% of the global wind capacity additions in 2018.
The statistics also show that new wind installation in the Americas climbed by 12% in 2018, led by the US, Brazil and Mexico. The North American market witnessed a 10.8% expansion thanks to the final extension of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) in the US, while capacity additions in Latin America grew by 18.7% on the year following a range of successful auctions.
Competitive solicitations helped Brazil switch on 2 GW of capacity in 2018 and Mexico added almost 1 GW. Following their example, Colombia is expected to hold its first wind power auction this month.
At the end of 2018, the cumulative installed wind power capacity in North, Central and South America came at 135 GW.