The data was announced by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) in its last survey, which reports that, despite the international economic and financial downturn, in 2009 this industry generated a 45 billion euro turnover, also creating about half a million jobs.
Considering individual countries, China’s performance was particularly relevant, with 13,000 MW installed, more than a third of the additional power in 2009. For the fifth year running, China’s wind power capacity grew by over 100% over the previous year, so that plants in operation totalized 25,100 MW.
China, said Li Junfeng, Secretary General of the Chinese Renewable Energy Industries Association, is putting strong efforts into developing its tremendous wind resource. Given the current growth rates, it can be expected that even the unofficial target of 150 GW will be met well ahead of 2020.
The US have belied expectations that predicted a 50% collapse of this industry and have also performed excellently, by virtue of the support provided by the US Recovery Act. With 10,000 MW installed (+39% compared to 2008), the total capacity has now grown to 35,000 MW.
Europe added 10,500 MW, so that the total capacity reached 76,100 MW. Spain (2,500 MW, + 24%) leads best 2009 performances, followed by Germany (1,920 MW, +19%), Italy (1,114 MW, +11%), France (1088 MW, + 11% ) and the United Kingdom (1,077 MW, + 10%).