The British Wind Energy Association (BWEA) has released new figures showing that 2004 is a record year for the rapidly expanding UK wind industry and predicting that expansion out to 2010 should result in some £7 billion of new investment into the sector.
BWEA data shows that this year 10 new wind projects have been commissioned totalling 240MW of new capacity, with 2 more to be commissioned by the end of the year – representing almost 3 times last years build.
There are currently 18 wind projects under construction totalling over 600 MW. This new capacity is all scheduled to be commissioned next year. This year, 33 new wind projects were approved through the planning system, totalling some 800 MW of new capacity.
What’s more, there are presently 94 onshore projects in planning, representing some 4,767 MW of capacity, equal to some 5% of the nation’s electricity needs.
Looking out to 2010, BWEA released new findings following a survey of 6 major companies at the centre of the development of wind power. The survey shows that, by 2010, it is predicted that there will be some 7,500MW of wind power installed in the UK. Half of that is predicted to be onshore and half is predicted to be offshore.
This represents some 7.5% of the nation’s electricity needs, approximately three-quarters of the Government’s 2010 renewable energy target. It also represents an investment of £7 billion over the next six years.