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Wind Energy Provides Europe With 8% Of Its Electricity In 2014

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The 2014 Joint Research Centre’s wind status report shows that wind energy provided Europe with 8% of its electricity in 2014.

According to the Joint Research Centre’s (JRC) 2014 wind status report, “2014 was overall a good year for the wind energy sector” in Europe. “The level of installations represented a new record and turbine manufacturers … saw healthy economic indicators.”

7.5 MW wind turbines 3Specifically, the EU’s grid-connected cumulative wind capacity in 2014 reached 129 GW, accounting for 8% of European electricity demand. Such a figure equates to the equivalent of the combined annual consumption of Belgium, the Netherlands, Greece, and Ireland.

This growth is expected to continue growing, and by 2020 account for 12% of European electricity.

Of course, there are certain countries which are making greater headway within Europe. Denmark generated enough wind electricity in 2014 to cover 40% of its internal demand, while in Ireland, Portugal, and Spain, the share of wind reached between 19% and 25% of final consumption. Not as impressive, but still worthwhile mentioning, 15 other EU Member States generated 4% or more of their electricity from wind energy generation.

2014 saw 13 GW worth of wind power capacity installed in Europe, of which 11.8 GW were connected to the grid, bringing Europe’s cumulative connected capacity up to 129 GW, producing ~265 TWh of electricity annually.

While the report focused primarily on Europe, it acknowledged the global nature of the wind energy industry. The global cumulative connected capacity soared to 370 GW in 2014, with 2014’s 52.8 GW installed capacity representing an annual record, a 48% increase compared to 2013, and 17% compared to 2012.

China is well ahead of the pack, with 23.2 GW of new installations and a market share of 44%, though Europe remains the cumulative installed leader — for now.

Image: 7 MW wind turbines in Germany, via Zachary Shahan | CleanTechnica (CC BY-SA 4.0)

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