Offshore wind power market in 2014
- 408 new offshore wind turbines in nine wind farms and one demonstration project, worth between €4.2 billion and €5.9 billion, were fully grid connected between 1 January and 31 December 2014. The new capacity totals 1,483.3 MW - 5.34% less than in 2013;
- 536 turbines were erected during 2014, an average of 5.9 MW per day. 373 of these turbines are awaiting grid connection;
- Work is on-going on 12 projects.
Cumulative offshore wind power market
- 2,488 turbines are now installed and grid connected, making a cumulative total of 8,045.3 MW in 74 wind farms in 11 European countries;
- 78.8% of substructures are monopiles, 10.4% are gravity foundations, jackets account for 4.7%, tripods account for 4.1%, and tripiles account for 1.9%;
- There are also two full-scale grid-connected floating turbines.
Market outlook for 2015 and 2016
- Once completed, the 12 offshore projects currently under construction will increase installed capacity by a further 2.9 GW, bringing the cumulative capacity in Europe to 10.9 GW.
Trends: turbines, foundations, water depth and distance to shore
- The average offshore wind turbine size was 3.7 MW, slightly less than in 2013 due to the increased proportion of installation of the Siemens 3.6 MW wind turbines;
- The average size of a grid-connected offshore wind farm in 2014 was 368 MW, 24.1% less than the previous year. This is the result of the 2013 completion of the record breaking London Array (630 MW);
- The average water depth of wind farms completed, or partially completed, in 2014 was 22.4 metres (m) and the average distance to shore was 32.9 km.
Financing highlights and developments
- Project finance is increasingly becoming an important tool in financing offshore wind. The industry raised €3.14 billion of non-recourse debt in 2014 – the highest ever level reached in the industry;
- Nearly half of the final investment decisions made in 2014 were billion-euro projects, in total 2,323 MW of new gross capacity was financed;
- Partnerships are becoming a key to success, and as liquidity is back in the financial markets, developers will be more likely to align their interests with those of potential investors.