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28th January 2013
Last year saw the value of starts in the renewable energy sector hit a new high as the flurry of activity that began in 2011 continued to strengthen. The boom is being driven by the need to meet EU targets by 2020 and looks set to maintain momentum over the next few years. Glenigan data for last year show the overwhelming majority, 75%, of underlying project starts were related to new wind generating capacity. There was also activity across a wide range of bio-energy projects as well as solar related projects.
Figures released from DECC at the end of last year show that this trend looks set to continue well into the next few years. Their projections show that onshore wind capacity will almost double between now and 2015 and continue to rise thereafter. Offshore wind capacity will also double between now and then and will continue to be strong onto 2020 as offshore capacity is brought up to the same level as onshore.
Growth will also be strong in biomass related generation in the next few years, set to increase by about two and a half times by 2015, which should ensure a wide range of projects beginning in the next year. The prospects for solar also look bright with capacity set to increase by nearly three times by 2015 and a staggering six times by 2020 when solar capacity will be roughly equal to offshore wind capacity.
All in all the prospects for renewables have never been better, despite some controversy and political opposition in parts of the country the boom looks set to continue for a number of years to come as the political momentum for a greener Britain gathers strength.
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