A new report from the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), Global Wind Energy Outlook 2016, forecasts highly promising growth for future wind power capacity around the world.
The report highlights that the global wind industry enjoyed a record year in 2015, closing with an annual installed capacity of 63 GW and a cumulative installed capacity of 433 GW. With a 17% increase over the previous year, wind power was the most popular choice for new generating capacity. Globally, almost US$110bn was invested in new wind power development.
GWEC reports Asia is the world’s largest regional wind market, with a total installed capacity of 175.8 GW. At national level, China leads the wind industry, with cumulative wind power installations (145 GW) at the end of 2015 greater than all EU countries combined (141.6 GW).
While 28 countries now have an installed wind power capacity of over 1 GW, eight countries now have more than 10 GW installed.
The report provides forecasts for future wind capacity in 2050 varying from a conservative 2,870 GW under the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) New Policies Scenario, to a more ambitious 5,806 GW under the GWEC Advanced Scenario. Under the GWEC Advanced Scenario, wind power is projected to provide at least 36% of global electricity demand in 2050. By 2030 wind power could reach 2,110 GW and supply up to 20% of global electricity, creating 2.4 million new jobs and reducing CO2 emissions by more than 3.3 billion tonnes per year, as well as attracting annual investments of some €200bn.