Europe invested €42.8 billion in new wind farms in 2020, the second-highest annual amount on record, despite challenges from the Covid-19 pandemic, WindEurope’s report showed Tuesday.
According to the report, Financing and Investment Trends in the European Wind Industry in 2020, investments in offshore wind farms hit a record €26.3 billion, which financed 7.1 gigawatts (GW) of new offshore capacity.
Investments in new onshore wind farms reached €16.5 billion, financing 12.5 GW of new onshore capacity.
"The figure of €26.3 billion in offshore wind investments was a new record. However, the figure of €16.5 billion in onshore wind investments was the lowest amount since 2017," the report revealed, explaining that it was mainly due to delays in permitting new onshore wind farms in many countries in Europe.
The report affirmed that wind energy remains an attractive investment with plenty of available finance for investments in this sector.
However, WindEurope advised in the report of the necessity to align the EU and national economic recovery plans with the European Green Deal to help accelerate the transition to a low-carbon energy system.
- UK invested most in Europe
According to the report, the UK invested the most in new wind farms in 2020 with €13.5 billion, followed by the Netherlands with investments of €7.9 billion.
The record amount invested in the UK was largely the result of €9.4 billion in financing for what promises to be the world’s largest offshore wind farm, for phases A and B of Dogger Bank, located between 130km and 190km from the North East coast of England.
"This will allow for the construction of 2.4 GW out of the 3.6 GW wind farm, the largest wind farm in Europe to date," the report explained.
In addition to the large investments of the UK and the Netherlands, Germany invested €2.2 billion and France invested €1.8 billion - the most in onshore wind although these amounts were lower than in previous years.
€1 equals to $1.19 at 0609 GMT on Tuesday.
By Gulsen Cagatay