Denmark records highest share of wind energy in Europe
Denmark had a higher share of wind power in its electricity mix than any other European country in 2018, statistics from WindEurope have revealed today.
The figures show that 41% of Denmark’s electricity came from wind last year, with Ireland recording the next highest share on 28%, followed by Portugal on 24%.
Moreover, the numbers show that wind accounted for 14% of total EU electricity in 2018, up from 12% the previous year, with more powerful turbines helping to drive up its share in the energy mix.
And investments in future wind capacity shot up by 45%, despite only 20% more euros being invested, which WindEurope said demonstrates greater “bang for your buck” as costs continue to fall.
CEO Giles Dickson, said: “Investments in future capacity were quite good last year thanks to the UK, Spain, Sweden, and thanks also to the further expansion of offshore wind.
“More and more people and businesses are benefitting from the clean and affordable power that wind delivers.”
However, the figures show that 12 EU countries didn’t install a single wind turbine last year, with installations across Europe at the lowest levels seen since 2011.
New capacity dropped by a third across the continent, falling from 13GW the previous year to 9GW, despite wind still accounting for half of all new power generation capacity.
Additions in Germany were down by over half thanks to poorly designed auctions and problems with permitting, while the number of new onshore wind farms dried up in the UK too.
Dickson said the findings suggest that “many things are not right” beneath the surface.
“With the noble exception of Lithuania, and despite improvements in Poland, there’s a lack of ambition in Central and Eastern Europe,” he continued. “The 2030 National Energy & Climate Plans are a chance to put things right.
“But the draft plans are badly lacking in detail on policy measures, auction volumes, how to ease permitting and remove other barriers to wind investments, and how to expand the grid.
“Governments need to sort this out before they finalise the plans this year.”
Image credit: Shutterstock
Chris Seekings is a reporter for TRANSFORM