Europe Invested EUR 27 Billion in New Wind Farms Last Year

According to WindEurope’s annual Financing and Investment Trends report, the amount invested is similar to previous years. But, with cost reduction, especially in the offshore wind segment, the investments will finance a record 16.7 GW of new wind capacity. 1 MW of new onshore wind capacity now requires only EUR 1.4 million capital expenditure, down from EUR 2 million in 2015. And 1 MW of new offshore wind capacity requires EUR 2.5 million, down from EUR 4.5 million in 2015. Most of the future new capacity for which investments were announced last year was onshore wind: 12.5 GW. Offshore wind accounted for 4.2 GW, though 38.5% of the amounts invested. In total 190 wind farms across 22 different countries in Europe reached the Final Investment Decision (FID) last year. Northern and Western Europe still account for most new investments. The UK was the biggest investor, mostly in offshore wind. Sweden was second. Investments in Southern and Central and Eastern Europe were only 4% of the total, though Spain and Poland will pick up this year. A further EUR 24.1 billion was invested in the acquisition of wind farms including projects under development and of companies involved in wind energy. This is much more than in previous years. The maturity of wind energy and the competitiveness of the sector have brought in more investors as equity partners in projects, particularly from financial services. As investors become more confident about wind energy, they can price risk more accurately and invest earlier in projects.

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