Current Study on Wind Energy Use

8% growth expected in 2005

Last year the wind power sector in Germany once again had to announce decreasing installed power figures. Although a good result was achieved, with an installation of 1,201 wind turbines and a newly installed power of 2,036 Megawatts, this is a decrease of approx. 23 percent over the previous year (2,644 MW). There are currently more than 16,543 WT in operation in Germany, producing a total of 29.9 billion kilowatt hours of electricity in an average wind year. This is approx. 5.87 % of net German electricity use. Worldwide, over 47,900 MW of wind power has been installed.

To provide answers to these questions, Övermöhle C & M has carried out a market survey of over 70 wind power project developers in recent months. The up-to-date results are available in the:

Market Research - Wind Energy in Germany 2005

The study provides information on the market potential in Germany and worldwide. It also looks at the current situation in offshore wind energy use. Further subjects are operation and service, repowering, developments in turbine technology, wind energy project developers’ current plans and their expansion abroad. Along with its own work, there are also expert contributions from the various areas within the field from the experts themselves, bringing their own practical experiences and knowledge into the study.

“Because of project postponements from the previous year, the market in Germany in 2005 is happily set to grow moderately once again. According to the definite plans of the wind energy project developers surveyed, approx. 2,200 MW (+ 8 percent) of new power will be installed“, explained Klaus Övermöhle, head of Övermöhle C & M. In 2006 the figures are expected to stagnate at a high level, before market development takes a downturn in 2007.

Apart from inland projects, occasional wind energy projects are also being implemented by German companies abroad. According to a current study by the renowned Dutch consultancy BTM Consult1, the worldwide growth in installed power in the next five years will be approx. 69,000 MW, of which 39,000 MW will be in Europe.
The German project developers will be able to benefit from this in the medium term, as they have positioned themselves early in some respects, have a head start over their competitors in terms of know-how, and can call upon years of experience. Doing business abroad involves higher risks (e.g. long lead times to project implementation), however, which must be taken into account early and adequately.

The use of wind energy offshore won’t yet bring any additional impulses for German developers in 2005. Although the first near-shore turbine (Enercon E-112) was installed in Emden last year, the large projects are still being awaited. Nine offshore projects have been approved by the Federal Office for Shipping and Hydrography (BSH), but implementation keeps on being delayed. Due to the enormous lead costs, only financially strong companies will be able to be successful in this sector in the long term.

There was, however, a bitter setback in Europe last year in the offshore sector. All 80 Vestas nacelles of the Danish offshore wind farm Horns Rev had to be dismantled, repaired on land and re-installed. Due to this negative experience, other project developers have put the implementation of their offshore wind farms on hold for the time being. Fundamentally, we see the potential in the offshore sector as being very high. The risks in this field are still very high, however, due to a lack of experience.

The results of the study are positive, but also show that the wind power industry continues to be in a worldwide phase of consolidation. Due to a medium-term downturn in installation rates in Germany, the wind power project developers are being forced to either be successful abroad or to occupy new fields of business. Both options contain lots of opportunities, but also higher risks.

The study contains approx. 200 pages and is available in German and English as a booklet (75.00 Euros) or CD (35.00 Euros).
Övermöhle Consult & Marketing GmbH

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