Global Offshore Wind Portfolio Tops 121GW

The global market for offshore wind has grown by 16% in the last twelve months, with the largest gains coming from the USA, new figures from RenewableUK show.

The biggest single growth market over the last year has been the USA, which accounted for nearly half (48%) of growth globally, RenewableUK said.

Globally, the portfolio of global offshore wind projects in operation, under construction or in development rose from just under 105GW to over 121GW in the last year, according to new data RenewableUK is publishing at Global Offshore Wind 2019 in London. Europe is the largest single region, accounting for 66% of the global pipeline.

The UK remains the largest single market with projects totalling over 38.4GW at varying stages of development – a 9% rise in the last year. The UK Government recently agreed a Sector Deal with the offshore wind industry that will see offshore wind providing over a third UK power by 2030.

Germany keeps its second place position in the global rankings with 16.5GW of capacity – a fall on 12 months ago following the cancellation of some older projects that have been stalled for a number of years, the figures show.

The USA has overtaken both China (12GW) and Taiwan (8.9GW) to become the third largest global markets as the pipeline of US offshore wind projects has grown to 15.7GW, up from 7.5GW in 2018.

The strong growth in the US market was driven largely by new policy initiatives from States on the East Coast, such as Massachusetts bringing forward plans for an additional 1.6GW and New Jersey unveiling a target of 3.5GW by 2030, RenewableUK said.

These five countries dominate the global market for offshore wind, accounting for 75% of capacity worldwide.

The surge in new projects globally comes in a year in which the costs of offshore wind have continued to fall, with many markets seeing prices drop in excess of 50% in the last few years. Earlier this month, France secured 600MW at less than EUR 50 per MWh and, in the UK, a new auction process is expected to secure up to 6,000MW of new capacity at prices below GBP 56/MWh.

“The UK is putting offshore wind at the heart of our energy future and markets across the globe are following our lead. Other countries are racing to match world leaders like the UK, opening up opportunities for export and investment across the globe. Innovation in offshore wind will help transform the UK’s energy system and set global trends in new markets,” RenewableUK’s CEO Hugh McNeal said.

”The UK is the most exciting offshore wind market in the world in 2019, with up to 6GW of new capacity coming forward at record low prices. The industry is creating new opportunities in communities across the UK and investing in talent to grow our workforce to over 27,000.”

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