Nov 21, 2013 - Europe’s offshore wind sector will need to lure investments of EUR 90 billion (USD 121bn) to EUR 123 billion by the end of the decade to achieve its 40-GW goal, but policy uncertainty is proving a significant challenge.
In a report published Wednesday the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) is pointing to regulatory risk as the obstacle for the segment’s growth. The UK and Germany -- the biggest offshore wind markets in Europe -- are no exception as policies there are also changing causing much uncertainty for investors, EWEA said, citing a survey of the financial community. Availability of financing is less likely to hold down the offshore wind industry’s expansion, the organisation added.
In the “Where’s the money coming from? Financing offshore wind farms” report, which is based on research from Ernst &Young, EWEA is calling for a binding renewables energy target at the European Union (EU) level for 2030 as it will ensure the needed certainty for the offshore wind segment. It is also urging the EU to create predictable grid connection regimes, keep the shallow grid connection charges as best practice for power infrastructure financing and provide liquidity and credit support. Last but not least, the report is stressing on the importance of engaging consumers in an open dialogue on the cost of energy.
“By undermining investment stability, governments are putting green growth, jobs and a world-leading European industry at risk,” EWEA chief executive Thomas Becker said. The good news is that, according to the survey, traditional as well as new investors plan to keep investing in offshore wind despite the challenging financing requirements.
(EUR 1 = USD 1.344)
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