Spain a pioneer in wind power
Feb 6, 2008 - EFE (energycentral.com)
Spain, the United States and China
were the world leaders last year in wind power, an
alternative energy source whose global installed capacity
grew 27 percent, according to Global Wind Energy Council,
or GWEC, figures.
Spain expanded its capacity by 3,515
MW last year, a figure exceeded only by the 5,244
MW installed by the United States and China's 3,449
MW addition to its capacity.
"Total installed wind energy capacity
now stands at over 15 GW in Spain," GWEC said.
Germany ranks first in the world, with
22.3 GW of installed wind power capacity, followed
by the United States, with 16.8 GW.
"The growth rates we are experiencing
in wind energy continue to exceed our most optimistic
expectations," GWEC Secretary-General Steve Sawyer
said. "Globally, wind energy has become a mainstream
energy source and an important player in the world's
energy markets, and it now contributes to the energy
mix in more than 70 countries across the globe."
The GWEC report called Spain "the big
surprise in the European market" because of its push
to expand installed wind power capacity last year.
"The capacity of new wind turbines brought
on line across Europe last year was 8,662 MW. Total
wind power capacity installed by the end of 2007 reached
57,135 MW and will avoid about 90 million tons of
CO2 annually and produce 119 TWh in an average wind
year," GWEC said.
"It is positive that wind energy is
now increasing more than any other power technology
in Europe, making up 40 percent of total new power
installations," European Wind Energy Association CEO
Christian Kjaer said.
GWEC noted, however, that even though
Europe continued to be the leader in wind power, the
continent accounted for only 43 percent of new global
installed capacity, down from 75 percent in 2004.
For the first time in decades, more
than half the annual market for wind power in 2007
was outside Europe, a trend likely to continue in
the future. EFE