UK dominates global offshore wind sector

New research from trade body RenewableUK shows the UK continues to dominate the offshore wind sector, with a pipeline equating to a quarter of the global total.

The stats from the latest Offshore Wind Project Intelligence report also reveal that the global pipeline of offshore wind energy projects which are operational, under construction, consented or being planned has increased by 30 per cent in the last 12 months to 1 July, from 122GW to 159GW.

The UK has retained its top spot, dominating the market with a pipeline of 38.9GW. China has moved from 4th to 2nd place with 19.3GW – an increase of 7.3GW or 60 per cent.

The USA stayed in 3rd place – up 23 per cent from 15.7GW to 17.8GW – while Germany dropped from 2nd to 4th as it added just 68MW to its 16.5GW pipeline over the last 12 months. Taiwan remained in fifth with its pipeline growing by 28 per cent from 8.9GW to 11.4GW.

The top 5 countries represent 65 per cent of the total global pipeline, with 104GW of capacity between them. Europe has 60 per cent of the pipeline with 96GW.

In terms of operational capacity, the UK still leads the world with 9.7GW. It is followed by Germany with 7.5GW, China with 3.3GW, Belgium with 1.8GW and Denmark with 1.7GW.

RenewableUK’s deputy chief executive Melanie Onn said: “In the current economic crisis, these new figures show that offshore wind is one of the major growth opportunities worldwide. In the UK alone, we estimate that next year’s auction for renewable power could secure over £20 billion of new investment. Our latest Offshore Wind Project Intelligence report highlights the global potential for offshore wind to drive a green economic recovery.

“It’s great to see the UK’s world-leading offshore wind industry remains in pole position – other countries are following our lead and catching up fast, but we remain by far the biggest market for offshore wind in the world.

“This is a global industry and the UK’s offshore wind supply chain is increasing opportunities to sell our goods and expertise overseas, as we take on a new role on the global stage after Brexit. We’re already exporting to Europe, Asia, North America and Australia, and the value of our offshore wind exports is set to increase fivefold to £2.6 billion by 2030 for UK companies.”