Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Some see offshore wind power picking up

UK-based analyst Douglas-Westwood Ltd. said the offshore wind industry is showing growth with record levels of capacity now under construction. The benefits are that wind farms in deep ocean waters would not ruin beachside views, but the drawbacks are the costs. As the offshore oil industry already knows, expenses in general tend to increase in deeper, more distant waters.

In a report entitled “World Offshore Wind Report 2009-13,” Douglas-Westwood said 6.6 Gw of new capacity is expected to be installed globally within 5 years. That compares with 1.5 Gw of capacity now online.

The UK is dominant with 3 Gw of new capacity forecast to be added through 2013. Douglas-Westwood said. Germany is seen as the second biggest player, installing more than 1.5 Gw of capacity during that same period.

“The US has made great progress through the new administration to establishing the necessary mechanisms to allow offshore wind projects to be developed,” Douglas-Westwood said. “Supply chain development must now follow suit, and work is needed in procurement, installation, and logistics.”

So far, the US has no wind farm operating off its coasts. It’s been suggested that wind farms could provide power for offshore oil and gas operations, but time will tell whether that actually materializes on any grand scale, particularly off the US.

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Blogger Admin said...

I found this article very interesting. Whilst the UK is expanding both onshore and offshore wind farms the Government seems reluctant to fund smaller scale projects. In Germany and France there are significant incentives for individuals and towns to invest in wind energy and as a result there is a real shift in people attitudes towards carbon-fre energy production. Whilst the economics may not add up for domestic wind generation, it does help to change attitudes.
kind regards
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