Anomaly? Global wind market slowed in 2013

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In 2013, growth in the global wind power market slowed dramatically, especially in the United States and Spain, according to Navigant Research.

Wind power at Mt. Aso, Kyusyu, Japan. Credit: Miya M/Wikimedia Commons

Navigant reports the following results for 2013:

  • Global installation was 36.13 GW
  • China regained its title as the world's largest annual market with 16,088 MW of new wind power installed
  • Offshore wind grew more than 50 percent and is poised for steady growth in Europe

"Last year was the first in which the wind industry experienced negative growth since 2004, but there are signs that the 2013 slowdown will turn out to be an anomaly," said Feng Zhao, research director with Navigant Research. "As wind turbine vendors search for new opportunities in emerging markets -- primarily in Latin America and Africa -- and develop machines for maximum energy production in low wind speed areas, the industry is expected to add another 250 gigawatts of capacity through 2018." 

Despite this slowdown, wind currently powers nearly 3 percent of the world and is expected to grow over the next several years -- delivering 7.3 percent of the electricity consumed worldwide by 2018, Navigant predicts. 

Helping to drive growth will be the offshore market, which saw 13 new projects installed in 2013, adding 1,720 MW -- a 50 percent increase over 2012 -- according to the researcher.  Nearly half of all new offshore capacity in 2013 was installed in the United Kingdom, according to the report.

Navigant predicts that wind power will deliver at least 2.87 percent of the world's electricity in 2014 and wind power capacity installations will rebound with 29.6 percent growth.

For more:
- see this report

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