Worldwide wind capacity additions slowed slightly in 2017 to 52.57GW as China, the US and Germany again powered ahead, and Europe, India and the offshore sector had record years, annual market statistics by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) show.
Last year’s additions were down from 54.64GW in 2016, but brought the world’s cumulative wind power capacity to 539.58GW by the end of December.
“The numbers show a maturing industry, in transition to a market-based system, competing successfully with heavily subsidised incumbent technologies,” GWEC secretary general Steve Sawyer said.
“The transition to fully commercial market-based operation has left policy gaps in some countries, and the global 2017 numbers reflect that, as will installations in 2018.”
In Asia, China continued to lead, adding 19.5GW last year. India had a very strong year with 4.15GW in new installations, but will be the “victim” of a policy gap in 2018, GWEC said.
Pakistan (200MW in additions), Thailand (+218MW) and Vietnam (+38MW) all continue to show promise, and there are stirrings in the laggard markets in Japan (+177MW), and particularly in South Korea (+106MW) as a result of policies being enacted by the new government.