Offshore wind turbines increase in Europe but financing still slow

City A.M. Reporter
AROUND twice as many offshore wind turbines were added to the power grid in Europe in the first half of 2013 compared with a year ago, but financing for new projects has slowed, industry body the European Wind Energy Association has revealed.

Offshore wind power is still in its infancy and its financing is a political issue as cash-strapped governments balk at the subsidies the industry says are necessary until economies of scale and streamlined processes can make it more competitive.

In the first half of this year, 277 new offshore wind turbines, totalling 1,045 megawatts were fully connected to the power grid, compared with 523.2 megawatts in the same period last year, EWEA said in a report published today.

Germany’s Siemens was responsible for the vast majority of this year’s new connections, it added.

Total offshore capacity in Europe stands at 6,040 megawatts, spread over 58 wind farms in 10 countries, up from 4,336 megawatts in June last year.

The International Energy Agency said capital costs for offshore wind in Europe were between around €3.5m per megawatt and €4.9m per megawatt from late 2011 to early 2013.