July 27, 2011 — The European Wind Energy Association predicted in a recent study a 4.5 percent increase in installations of offshore capacity compared to the first half of 2010.
101 new offshore wind turbines, with a total capacity of 348 MW, were connected to the power grids in the U.K., Germany and Norway during the first six months of 2011. In Europe, eleven offshore wind farms worth some $12.3 billion and with a total capacity of 2,844 MW are currently under construction in European waters.
The size of the installed offshore wind turbines averaged 3.4 MW — up from an average of 2.9 MW during the first half of 2010.
Several wind farms in Germany and the U.K. will reach financial close in 2011 and financial institutions will this year provide a record amount of financing to the sector — more than $4.35 billion. Between three and five transactions are expected to close during the course of the year. Equity financing, including divestment of stakes in existing projects to initiate new ones, highlights new approaches to financing among developers and power companies following the financial crisis.
As of June 30, there are 1,247 offshore wind turbines fully grid connected with a total capacity of 3,294 MW in 49 wind farms spread between nine European countries.