Report: Offshore Wind Pipeline Has Jumped 50 Percent Since January

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Published Oct 30, 2020 7:42 PM by The Maritime Executive

This week, the wind energy trade association RenewableUK released a report showing that new project decisions have increaseed the size of the wind project pipeline by 50 percent since January, despite the challenges of arranging complex development deals during a pandemic.  

RenewableUK’s review found that the total capacity of offshore wind projects worldwide - including existing operational projects, plus those under construction, consented, in planning or in development - currently stands at 197 gigawatts, up from 135 GW in mid-January. Just over half of that pipeline is in Europe, and the UK is the hottest market overall. In Britain, the total pipeline stands at about 41 GW, up 12 percent since January.

China is also booming: it is now in second place with 26 GW in development, up from fourth place earlier this year. This trend is likely to accelerate: the Global Wind Energy Council expects that it will be the largest offshore wind market in the world by 2030, with an installed base of 52 GW. 

The United States is in third with about 18 GW, almost all in planning and permitting phases. Brazil has jumped suddenly to fourth place with 16 GW worth of future projects - all of it announced since the beginning of 2020. 

In terms of current operational capacity, the UK has the most in the world (10.4GW), Germany is in second place with 7.7GW, China is third (4.6GW), Belgium fourth (1.8GW) and Denmark fifth with 1.7GW.

“The global appetite to develop new offshore wind projects remains enormous, despite the pandemic this year, as this research proves. The UK and many other countries are counting on the rapid growth of the offshore wind sector to be a key driver in the worldwide green economic recovery," said RenewableUK’s Deputy Chief Executive Melanie Onn in a statement. “Our capacity is set to quadruple over the course of this decade following the Prime Minister’s landmark commitment to power every UK home with offshore wind by 2030."