We update this every year, and the outlook, including land-based turbines, is very positive. In RI, as an example, we've experienced tremendous growth on the wind side.
Wind Energy Outlook 2015: Could Total Installed Wind Capacity Reach 2,000 GW by 2030?David Appleyard
In the face of a four-year wind growth stagnation and an energy market that has seen oil fall to its lowest price in years, with robust policy to address climate change, wind power could supply close to 20 percent of global electricity demand by 2050.
Under an advanced policy scenario — the manifestation of the iron political will required in order to address climate change — wind power could reach a total installed global capacity of 2,000 GW by 2030, supplying up to 19 percent of global electricity. This is the key conclusion of the latest Global Wind Energy Outlook (GWEO) from the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and Greenpeace.
In presenting three scenarios for future wind power developments, the 2014 edition further concludes that by 2050, wind power could provide 25-30 percent of global electricity supply. For perspective, wind energy installations totaled 318 GW globally by the end of 2013 while, worldwide, the industry installed an additional 45 GW or so in 2014.
Taking the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) central scenario as a baseline and developing “moderate” and “advanced” development pathways, the report presents 2020, 2030 and 2050 forecasts, which paint two different futures.
Under the “moderate” scenario wind power gains ground but, without an effective carbon market, continues to struggle against heavily subsidized incumbents. According to the report, the “moderate” scenario starts with about 14 percent growth in 2014, tapering off gradually to 10 percent by 2020 and then down to 6 percent by 2030.
The more realistic, business as usual, “moderate” forecast sees an annual market size topping 65 GW by 2020 for a total installed capacity of 712 GW by then. Robust growth is anticipated in the period after 2020, with annual markets exceeding 85 GW by 2030 and bringing total installed capacity up to nearly 1500 GW by the end of that decade.
In terms of the volume of electricity produced by wind power, the GWEO “moderate” scenario envisages a large contribution from wind, some 1750 TWh in 2020, rising to almost 3900 TWh in 2030. In this case wind power would meet between 7.2 percent and 7.8 percent of global electrical demand in 2020, and between 12.9 percent and 14.5 percent by 2030. The report notes that while this is quite a substantial contribution, it is nonetheless “probably not in line with what would be required to meet agreed climate protection goals.”
Recently released IEA Wind 2013 Annual Report figures show world wind capacity now generates enough to meet about 4 percent of global electricity demand. In 2013, five countries installed more than 1 GW, including China with 16.09 GW, Germany at 3.36 GW, the United Kingdom at 2.42 GW, Canada with 1.60 GW, and the United States at 1.09 GW. Furthermore, nine countries increased capacity by more than 20 percent, including Finland with a 67 percent increase, México at 35 percent, and the UK at 29 percent.
Nonetheless, under the “advanced” GWEO scenario there is a much stronger international political commitment towards meeting climate goals and as a result national energy policy is driven by renewables and clean energy development.
The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) predicts two possible scenarios for the growth of the global wind market over the next 5 to 15 years. In the advanced scenario, total installed wind capacity approached 2,000 GW by 2030. Credit: Global Wind Energy Outlook produced by the GWEC and Greenpeace.
In this scenario, cumulative growth rates start off well below the historical average at 15 percent, remain steady in the middle of this decade and then taper off to 13 percent by the end of the decade, dropping to 6 percent by 2030. Here, annual market size would top 90 GW by the end of the decade, bringing total installed capacity to just over 800 GW by 2020 and nearly 2000 GW by 2030.
Furthermore, the “advanced” scenario shows wind power generating over 1950 TWh by 2020, meeting between 8.1 percent and 8.8 percent of global electricity demand, and wind power contributes more than 5000 TWh in 2030, supplying between 16.7-18.8 percent of global electricity.
The authors do, however, concede that such an outcome could only occur with a robust climate regime in place, assuming that current market difficulties are overcome in the near future and that “a broad, clear commitment to the decarbonization of the electricity sector emerges rather quicker than seems likely at present.”
Wind Turbine Supply Chain Reports Reveal Challenging Road Ahead
A new report by TechNavio on the wind turbine supply chain reveals that the global wind turbine rotor blade market is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 14.5 percent over the period 2013-2018. Similarly, new analysis from FTI Intelligence on the global wind supply chain for 2015 reveals that competition is now taking place not only on product quality and price, but also on the value-added products and services that suppliers are now required to provide to assist turbine OEMs and end users to bring down the LCOE in order to compete with conventional energy sources.
Reflecting the challenges facing the wind sector, FTI’s report also notes that more than 120 suppliers have collapsed or stayed out of the wind business in the past two years, including 88 from Asia, 23 from Europe and 18 from North America while a prolonged market contraction has forced major turbine OEMs to divest in-house non-core production assets and opt for extensive outsourcing in order to insulate themselves from market fluctuations.
Feng Zhao, Director at FTI Consulting, explains: “The wind industry has been in the process of transformation since 2011 and the global wind supply chain is not matured yet. The exit/non-participation of so many suppliers delivers a dangerous signal to governments. To bring wind towards a position where it can compete head-to-head with conventional energy sources, it is imperative to find a balance between maintaining attractive and certain policy and reducing the burden on governments and consumers caused by paying renewable energy subsidy.”