Clean Power

Published on June 20th, 2013 | by Zachary Shahan


Top Wind Power Countries Per GDP (CleanTechnica Exclusive)

June 20th, 2013 by  

Following up on my “Top Wind Power Countries In The World Per Capita” rankings and article, below are “Top Wind Power Countries In The World Per GDP” rankings for total installed wind power at the end of 2012 as well as newly installed wind power during the year 2012.

Top Wind Power Countries Per GDP 2012

These per GDP wind power rankings use 2012 GDP data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as well as the Global Wind Energy Council’s (GWEC’s) wind power capacity data [PDF].

Total Installed Wind Power Capacity Per GDP

As stated in my previous post, I think the total (aka cumulative) wind power capacity numbers are more important than the new (installed in 2012) numbers, since some wind power leaders may have had a slow year or may simply be taking wind power growth more slowly after reaching a certain “high” level of saturation. So, I’m starting with the total wind power installation comparisons. Here are two charts and a table showing leading countries for total installed wind power capacity per GDP:

Click & then magnify to enlarge.

Click & then magnify to enlarge. Image Credit: Zachary Shahan / CleanTechnica

top wind power countries gdp pie

This pie chart represents percentages of total world wind power capacity per GDP in countries with notable amounts of wind power. Click & then magnify to enlarge. Image Credit: Zachary Shahan / CleanTechnica

As was the case last year, Portugal, Spain, Denmark, Cape Verde, and India are clear leaders in wind power capacity relative to GDP. Germany, China, and Ireland also held steady in the top 10.

However, Nicaragua and Romania were new to the top 10. Neither of those countries were even in the top 30 last year. I think that’s a good hint for what’s to come in the next section….

Newly Installed Wind Power Capacity Per Capita

Who were the movers and shakers in new wind power installations per capita? Yep, Romania and Nicaragua top this list. Some other countries saw a strong rise in 2012, as well. Have a look:

top wind power countries new wind power per gdp 2012

Click & then magnify to enlarge. Image Credit: Zachary Shahan / CleanTechnica

top new wind power countries gdp 2012

This pie chart represents percentages of new world wind power capacity per GDP in countries with notable amounts of wind power. Click & then magnify to enlarge. Image Credit: Zachary Shahan / CleanTechnica

Aside from Romania and Nicaragua at #1 and #2 (after not being on the list last year), Poland moved up from #9 in 2011 to #3 in 2012, Sweden moved up from #6 to #4, and China move down from #3 to #5. The remaining top 10 and their movements from the 2011 newly installed wind power leaders list are as follows:

#6: India (down from #4 in 2011)

#7: Ethiopia (not on the list in 2011)

#8: Tunisia (not on the list in 2011)

#9: US (up from #18 in 2011)

#10: Spain (up from #11 in 2011)

Clearly, several emerging wind power markets (Romania, Nicaragua, Ethiopia, and Tunisia) topped this list, as well as a few perennial wind power giants (China, the US, India, and Spain). And then there were two solid wind power per GDP leaders (Poland and Sweden).

As a reminder, you can see the 2010 and 2011 wind power rankings here:

Also, you can see 2012’s per capita wind power leaders here, and you can see 2012’s absolute wind power leaders, regional wind power leaders, global wind power growth, and more on Page 2.

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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) with the power of the typed word. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor, but he's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession, Solar Love, and Bikocity. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, and energy storage expert. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in.

  • Very useful information on Wind Energy.
    Dr.A.Jagadeesh Nellore(AP),India

  • nerox3

    Pie charts are not an appropriate format to represent this data graphically as the percentage term doesn’t make any sense. In order to take a percentage it has to be a percentage of something. What concretely is it a percentage of? It isn’t the total MW installed, it is the total MW/GDP which has no concrete meaning.

    • Haha, i’ve never used them before for these for that reason, but i thought they gave a good visual comparison so I used them this time. These are the countries with any notable amt of wind power, so it’s basically a % of countries with notable wind power. 😀

  • JamesWimberley

    The pie charts have no legend. I suppose they are shares of world installations. This is not a very useful bit of information except to point to the much more diversified character of wind markets compared to solar. If Romania cuts back, turbine vendors can look somewhere else.

    • They’re the same data as the charts above them — simply presented in another format for another type of visual comparison. As I noted above, I’ve never used them for these comparisons before, but I liked seeing the data visualized in these two different ways this time, so I threw them in. I thought it was obvious they were presenting the same data, so I kept them simpler visually (allowing them to be bigger in the post).

      • Dave2020

        Interesting as this is, no analysis is truly informative without figures for actual power production.

        “Statistics for the first quarter of 2013 show that offshore developments generated 2.5TWh compared with 1.5TWh for the same period in 2012.”

        Are such figures difficult to come by?

        • yeah, getting such figures for countries across the globe is, i think, near impossible. otherwise, i would certainly love to do such an analysis.

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