December 7 (Renewables Now) - France brought online 676 MW of wind power capacity in the first nine months of 2018 and registered a 16% year-on-year rise in production, according to official government statistics.
The new capacity additions are down from 1,070 MW commissioned in the first three quarters of 2017 following a drop in deployments in each of the three quarters. In the third quarter alone, France put on stream 288 MW of wind parks, down from 512 MW a year back.
A total of 1,729 wind power facilities were connected to the grid at the end of September with a cumulative installed capacity of 14,275 MW, about 95% of the 15,000 MW target set for the end of 2018. Almost two thirds of the overall capacity, or 9,300 MW, comes from wind parks with capacities of between 8 MW and 12 MW. By region, almost all of the capacity, standing at 14,233 MW, is located in mainland France, while 42 MW of the wind parks are situated in overseas territories.
Wind farms produced 17.9 TWh in the first nine months of 2018 and were responsible for 5.2% of the national electricity consumption. In spite of the poor weather conditions in the third quarter, generation rose by 16%.
France had a wind farm pipeline of 12 GW at the end of September, including 2.3 GW of projects that have already signed grid-connection contracts.