UK: Wind energy enjoys gale force boost to power output

The UK’s wind turbine fleet received a major boost last year, according to a new Met Office report that found winds were 16 per cent stronger than in 2010.

The Met Office last week published figures comparing the wind power performance of 2011 with 2010, as part of a series of reports designed to help European wind farm developers predict and manage wind energy supplies.

Despite the fact that the UK and Europe have experienced relatively low levels of wind during the last three years, the report found that many parts of Northern Europe saw far stronger winds in 2011, helping to boost renewable energy output.

Iceland saw the biggest increase, with winds that were 18 per cent stronger than in 2010. Similarly, Britain was 16 per cent windier last year, primarily as a result of two periods of windy weather during May and December.

Overall, Britain was three per cent windier last year in comparison to its long-term average. Denmark also saw winds increase by 10 per cent compared to 2010 and by five per cent compared to its long-term average.