Slowdown of New Projects in Offshore Energy
By Anne Lewis-Schneider
Record Year for Offshore energy in 2013
The present year is said to be in a stable position as far as offshore wind generation is concerned, but there is a great need for more new offshore projects to be built in 2014 to keep up with the demand of low carbon energy and renewable energy sources. Almost half of the offshore wind turbines that were connected in 2013 in Europe are located in UK offshore waters. In a recent report however it has been placed on record that there are too few projects in the pipeline for this year and more need to be planned if the industry is to keep up with the demand for clean energy.
418 new wind turbines became productive last year which is 33% more than in 2012 and bring in a combined amount of 6,562MW in total from offshore wind sources which is sufficient to provide 0.7% of the European electricity consumption per annum. There are currently 11 offshore wind projects that are in construction which is down from last year when 14 projects were in construction. In the report that was released by the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) it has been made clear that much more needs to be done to reach the goal of 22,000MW which is required.
Justin Wilkes is the deputy Chief Executive Officer of EWEA and in the report he emphasises the need for much more to be done in the offshore sector, and he has said that now is the time for government to make some move toward meeting the requirements set out for 2030. He says that it is governments’ unclear policy on offshore wind projects that is causing delays in the starting of some planned projects and that this is impacting on the expansion of the renewable energy source. This will have a knock-on effect in causing a slump in the development of green energy resources and that a clear indication had to be made by government early in this year to get the projects for renewable energy back on track.
Siemens, BARD, Vestas and Senvion are the top turbine manufacturers who connected installations to the grid during 2013, from fully functional wind farm energy generators. Gamesa and Alstom have got their first test turbines up and running and others will follow soon. Dong is the largest developer of wind energy in the UK and government has just been given the go-ahead for the construction of Able UK Marine Park. Smaller wind farms are slowly catching up across Europe and it is hoped that more will follow suit.
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