Clean Power

Published on April 2nd, 2015 | by Joshua S Hill


2014 A Record Year For Wind, Emerging Markets Driving Global Wind Energy Growth

April 2nd, 2015 by  

The Global Wind Energy Council has released its flagship report highlighting global wind energy growth throughout 2014, led by emerging markets in Africa and Latin America.

With 2014 sitting as another record year for the global wind industry, following annual installations surpassing 50 GW, and investments into the wind energy sector rising by 11%, much focus has been given to what 2015 and the years following will look like for wind energy. The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) Global Wind Report: Annual Market update report, released in Istanbul on Wednesday, also highlighted the important role emerging countries are playing in the global wind industry: China installed 23 GW of new wind capacity in 2014, bringing its cumulative total up to a staggering 114 GW. Brazil was the world’s 4th largest installer in 2014, and entered the top 10 cumulative rankings for the first time. The African wind energy market also took off in 2014, while Germany, Chile, Canada, and Turkey also had record years.

“Wind power’s growth is increasingly driven by its competitive pricing, as well as because it enhances energy security, price stability and (especially in China) through the need to address the choking smog that is increasingly making major urban areas in the developing world unlivable,” said Steve Sawyer, GWEC Secretary General.

“The need for clean, sustainable indigenous power sources to fuel economic growth throughout Africa, Asia and Latin America is increasingly being met through wind power, and this will continue for the foreseeable future”.

The Global Wind Energy Council’s annual regional forecast sees Asia dominating the market, followed by Europe and North America both holding relatively steady but at a much lower rate. Latin America is expected to grow considerably over the next several years, while the Pacific and Middle East and Africa regions will also see slight growth.


Subsequently, cumulative market growth will see Europe and Asia stay relatively close until 2018, at which point Asia will quickly begin to pull away. North American cumulative capacity is relatively staid, while Latin America should reach 33.5 GW by 2019.


For 2015, GWEC believes the global wind energy market will surpass 50 GW again, and could reach 60 GW in 2018. And with the Paris summit due later this year, the Global Wind Energy Council is urging countries to focus on the possibilities of wind energy:

“Looking ahead to the UN climate summit in Paris at the end of the year, we call on governments to wake up to the renewable energy revolution in the power sector, and set ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” added Sawyer.

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About the Author

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (, and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at for more.

  • Donald Zenga

    51 GW is a massive increase and hope they maintain this level and increase further.
    With larger windmills, they can push it further with fewer turbines.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Are we now grinding corn?

      (We make electricity with wind turbines. ;o)

  • Martin

    This is good news for our planet and all the companies making wind power related items.
    When will be the, worldwide, when RE/clean power will be more than FF power?
    The sooner the better!

    • No way

      Clean power was about 33% globally in 2012 so we are getting to half relatively soon.
      But when looking at total energy it’s a lot sader. Then it’s somewhere around 15% and a really long way to go until half of all energy is clean.

      • JamesWimberley

        Yes, but if you look at primary energy consumption you include all the wasted energy from fossil fuels. Going renewable cuts waste from 60% to at most 20%. (See LLNL energy flowcharts). An all-renewable energy supply will provide the same useful energy from half the primary energy. The real distance left is still long, but its shorter than many think.

        • Martin

          I think that the main problem towards that goal is
          a political, I live in Canada
          b greed, FF do not want to lose their investment
          c ignorance, goes hand in hand with the above
          d main steam media, go with c, b
          What needs to be done is simple, educate people so that they will understand the cost savings and when greed will take over, problem solved!
          Am I too optimistic and simple about what needs to be done?

          • Bob_Wallace

            Certainly fossil fuel industries are going to try to protect their incomes. But, as we can see by looking at what is happening with coal, they can only slow the movement to renewables. They can’t stop the transition, renewables are simply cheaper.

            We need governments working for renewables rather than for fossil fuel industries, which is happening in too many countries.

            How do we turn governments around? I think by helping our fellow citizens understand the advantages of renewable energy and EVs. Help people understand that renewables will lower their electricity cost over time, clean their air and water, help slow climate change. And then ask them to look for candidates that support renewables and EVs when the vote.

        • Bob_Wallace

          Right. Check the amount of wasted energy that comes from using thermal generators to produce electricity. Ouf of 97.4 quads of energy used to produce electricity 25.8 quads were lost. 26%. That’s mostly heat created by burning fossil fuels and from nuclear reactions which can’t be turned into electricity.

          And transportation wastes another 21.3 quads, 22%. Moving to EVs, electric buses, etc. will mean that we can also dodge replacing that energy we really don’t use.

          In the US we wasted 59 out of 97.4 quads in 2013. 61%. Decreasing that waste by 2/3rds makes the job of replacing fossil fuels much, much easier.

          (Clink on the image to embiggen.)

        • No way

          I was looking at final consumption, so no wasted energy included. If looking at primary energy then it would look like it would be even further away, but then your point of it being shorter than people would think would apply.
          But it’s kind of annoying how much energy just goes wasted. If you are polluting with a coal plant the least you should expect is some co-generation or so to make the most use of the energy. Not that we should burn any coal at all but I hope you get my point, not wasting energy goes for other fuels such as fossil gas, biogas, biomass or whatever.

    • timbuck93

      I’ve read someone comment that this could negatively affect wind patterns…. maybe there is no concern now, but when it’s REALLY everywhere….

      • Bob_Wallace

        The last I read was that rising temperatures might slow normal winds but the impact would be small and slow to develop. We’d probably adapt by just using longer turbine blades when we refurbished wind farms or built new ones.

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