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Global offshore wind market powers ahead with 16% growth

25 June 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Rob Norris
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New figures from RenewableUK show that the global market for offshore wind has grown by 16% in the last 12 months. The biggest single growth market over the last year has been the USA, which accounted for nearly half (48%) of growth globally.

Globally, the portfolio of global offshore wind projects in operation, under construction or in development rose from just under 105 gigawatts (GW) to over 121GW in the last year, according to new data RenewableUK is publishing at Global Offshore Wind 2019 in London. Europe is the largest single region, accounting for 66% of the global pipeline.

The UK remains the largest single market with projects totalling over 38.4GW at varying stages of development – a 9% rise in the last year. The UK Government recently agreed a Sector Deal with the offshore wind industry that will see offshore wind providing over a third UK power by 2030. Germany keeps its second place position in the global rankings with 16.5GW of capacity – a fall on 12 months ago following the cancellation of some older projects that have been stalled for a number of years.

The USA has overtaken both China (12GW) and Taiwan (8.9GW) to become the third largest global markets as the pipeline of US offshore wind projects has grown to 15.7GW, up from 7.5GW in 2018. The strong growth in the US market was driven largely by new policy initiatives from States on the East Coast, such as Massachusetts bringing forward plans for an additional 1.6GW and New Jersey unveiling a target of 3.5GW by 2030.

These five countries dominate the global market for offshore wind, accounting for 75% of capacity worldwide. The findings are unveiled in RenewableUK’s Offshore Wind Project Intelligence report, published on the first day of the trade association’s Global Offshore Wind conference in London.

The surge in new projects globally comes in a year in which the costs of offshore wind have continued to fall, with many markets seeing prices drop in excess of 50% in the last few years. Earlier this month, France secured 600 megawatts (MW) at less than €50 ($56) per MWh and, in the UK, a new auction process is expected to secure up to 6,000MW of new capacity at prices below £56 ($70) a MWh. 

Commenting on the new figures, RenewableUK’s CEO Hugh McNeal said:

“The UK is putting offshore wind at the heart of our energy future and markets across the globe are following our lead. Other countries are racing to match world leaders like the UK, opening up opportunities for export and investment across the globe. Innovation in offshore wind will help transform the UK’s energy system and set global trends in new markets. 


The UK is the most exciting offshore wind market in the world in 2019, with up to 6GW of new capacity coming forward at record low prices. The industry is creating new opportunities in communities across the UK and investing in talent to grow our workforce to over 27,000”.   




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  1. RenewableUK members are building our future energy system, powered by clean electricity. We bring them together to deliver that future faster; a future which is better for industry, billpayers, and the environment. We support over 400 member companies to ensure increasing amounts of renewable electricity are deployed across the UK and access markets to export all over the world. Our members are business leaders, technology innovators, and expert thinkers from right across industry.


  2. RenewableUK’s Offshore Wind Project Intelligence is compiled using information supplied by our member companies and from public information sources. The data highlighted in this media release covers the 12 months from June 2018 to June 2019.

  3. 1 GBP = 1.26 USD
    1 EUR = 1.12 USD

  4. Global Offshore Wind 2019 takes place on 25th-26th June at ExCeL London. Keynote political speakers include the BEIS Minister Lord Henley and the Governor of Massachusetts Charlie Baker.

  5. 3,000 delegates from over 40 countries will attend the event, which includes an exhibition in which 170 international companies will showcase the latest cutting-edge technology. RenewableUK is delivering the event alongside our partners Equinor, innogy, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult and ScottishPower Renewables.

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