UK’s total pipeline of offshore wind projects now stands at 86GW – more than eight times its current operational capacity, new research published by RenewableUK shows.
The pipeline includes fully operational projects, under construction, consented to, in the planning system, or being developed for submission into planning. This represents a 60% increase over the past 12 months, driven mainly by massive leasing round announcements by The Crown Estate (8GW) and Crown Estate Scotland (25GW).
The statistics also showed that the total global offshore wind pipeline has reached 517 GW. China now has more capacity fully operational than the UK (24 GW compared to 10.5 GW), but the UK’s total pipeline of 86 GW is bigger than China’s 75 GW. The USA is in third place with 48 GW in its pipeline.
RenewableUK’s Chief Executive Dan McGrail said: “Our latest EnergyPulse report shows that the UK’s world-class offshore wind industry has taken huge strides forward in the past 12 months, with landmark leasing announcements adding an extra 33 GW to our pipeline, and funding for floating wind ringfenced in the current CfD auction to help accelerate the growth of innovative technology. It’s clear that offshore wind will be doing the heavy lifting as we secure our clean home-grown energy supplies and move faster towards independence from unstable fossil fuel imports.
“The global offshore wind market is also continuing to grow at a phenomenal rate with an extra 200 GW added to the pipeline over the last year. As the UK was an early mover in offshore wind, we’re in a prime position to capitalise on our expertise as a market leader which is highly sought after worldwide.”
The report also analysed data on major components of UK offshore wind farms such as turbines, cables and substations. This showed that the average turbine capacity will increase from 8-9MW this year to 14-15 MW by 2025. The report noted that this requires more UK-based factories, which will also need to be larger, creating new supply chain opportunities.