Oct 18, 2013 - Wind power capacity additions slowed down in the first half of 2013 to 13.98 GW and brought the global total to 296.26 GW, the World Wind Energy Association (WWEA) said in a new report yesterday.
For comparison, in the first half of 2012 fresh wind turbine installations amounted to 16.5 GW, while in the January-June period of 2011 the result was 18.4 GW. WWEA explained that the decline was the result of weaker installations in the US which were just in part offset by emerging wind power markets.
Already wind power can meet 3.5% of the global power demand. By the end of 2012 the world’s total wind farm capacity is estimated to hit 318 GW. At present 73% of all wind turbines installed on the planned are located in China, USA, Germany, Spain and India.
In the first half of 2013 China installed the impressive 5.5 GW, more than any other country. Already, the Asian country has 80.8 GW of operating wind farms. However, the US -- another leader in terms of wind power installations, at least until the end of 2012 -- installed only 1.6 MW in January-June as compared to 2.88 GW a year back. The fall was due to the too-late extension of a major incentive. The US is expected to gain speed in the second half of the year and in 2014. The country now has 60 GW of installed wind turbines.
WWEA president He Dexin said that 2013 was a challenging year for sector firms due to contracting market size. Still this has led to lower wind equipment prices, which in turn makes that clean source of energy more competitive. “We see bright prospects for this technology which will become even more cost-competitive,” Dexin added.