Clean Power

Published on October 22nd, 2014 | by Giles Parkinson


2,000 GW Of Wind Power Projected For 2030

October 22nd, 2014 by  


Today’s graph of the day comes from the Global Wind Energy Outlook released on Tuesday in Beijing by the Global Wind Energy Council and Greenpeace International. It shows that wind power could reach 2,000 GW by 2030, and supply up to 17-19 per cent of global electricity by that time. By 2050, wind power could provide 25-30% of global electricity supply.

“Wind power has become the least cost option when adding new capacity to the grid in an increasing number of markets, and prices continue to fall”, said the Steve Sawyer, CEO of GWEC. “Given the urgency to cut down CO2 emissions and continued reliance on imported fossil fuels, wind power’s pivotal role in the world’s future energy supply is assured.”

Wind energy installations totalled 318 GW globally by the end of 2013, and the industry is set to grow by another 45 GW in 2014.

wind forecastSource: RenewEconomy. Reproduced with permission.

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About the Author

is the founding editor of, an Australian-based website that provides news and analysis on cleantech, carbon, and climate issues. Giles is based in Sydney and is watching the (slow, but quickening) transformation of Australia's energy grid with great interest.

  • Kevin McKinney

    A direct link to the GWEC report is here:

    I wrote about it, and about the recent IEA report on solar trends, here:

    It’s in the context of a summary review of Mark Lynas’s “Six Degrees”, and particularly the closing chapter, “Choosing Our Future.”

  • Mike

    How many birds will still be alive if we have this many turbines?

    • Offgridman

      A lot more than if we leave the coal powered generation running, as between the mining and resultant pollution caused by coal fired plants they kill birds on an almost 100 to 1 ratio per Kwh.
      But if you really want to do something about protecting the bird population then make sure that you and your friends monitor your house cats and do whatever you can to reduce the feral population. As it is cats that are the most devastating to the bird population here in the US, they way outstrip any harm caused by solar or wind farms.

      • Kevin McKinney

        Shame we have to keep repeating this for the faux-concerned, isn’t it? Thanks for carrying the ball this time!

        • mike

          I didnt mean that as an attack on wind energy. That was a genuine question. It seems like it would very difficult to find suitable locations for the sheer amount of turbines suggested here. It would seem pretty intuitive that migratory routes typically coincide with the windiest routes, thus the most attractive places for turbines and most dangerous places for birds. I mean I’m no expert, I just question everything.

          And come on, cats are killing sparrows, robins, pigeons etc. Not nearly as important as eagles and hawks that one would assume would be most susceptible to turbines.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Only a couple of wind farms have had raptor kill problems. Altamont Pass, our first wind farm, had a number of problems but they are being worked with taller, slower spinning turbines mounted on non-grid towers.

            The real problem for eagles is people shooting and poisoning them.

            Space for wind turbines will not be a problem in the US. I’ll give you a wind map so you can see how much really good resources we have. Especially offshore.

            Some countries are a big tight. Germany has been replacing smaller turbines with larger ones in their windiest areas. And they’ll go offshore as well.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Discuss isn’t showing the graph. I’ll try again later.

          • Bob_Wallace


          • Bob_Wallace


            What this graph of wind resources at 80 meters doesn’t show is that if you go up another ten to thirty meters there’s a lot of good wind available in the Southeast and up the eastern seaboard.

  • Michael G

    I did that over here:

    I get 50% of global energy use being solar by 2040 based on current and projected usage. If we cross some cost-with-storage threshold we could hit it earlier – say 2031.

    Too many links to copy-paste.

  • Adam Grant

    What happens if you fit an exponential curve on solar-installs-to-date and project it out to 2030 or 2050?

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