Wind energy: over 21 percent of all new wind farm capacity in 2011

In 2011, 9,616 MW of wind energy capacity was installed in the European Union, making a total of 93,957 MW — enough to supply 6.3 percent of the E.U.’s electricity, according to figures published by the European Wind Energy Association.

Representing 21.4 percent of new power capacity, wind energy installations in 2011 were similar to the previous year’s 9,648 MW. The wind industry has had an average annual growth of 15.6 percent over the last 17 years (1995-2011).

Growth in onshore installations in Germany and Sweden, and offshore in the U.K. — together with continuing strong performances from some emerging onshore markets such as Romania — offset a fall in installations in mature markets such as France and Spain. Overall, Germany remains the E.U. country with the largest installed capacity, followed by Spain, France, Italy and the U.K.

Altogether, more renewable power capacity was installed during 2011 than any other year. Renewables accounted for 71.3 percent of new installations: 32,043 MW – up 37.7 percent on 2010 installations. Both fuel oil and nuclear power saw a drop last year, with more capacity decommissioned than installed.

Overall last year, the E.U.’s total installed power capacity increased by 35,468 MW net to 895,878 MW, with wind power increasing its share of installed capacity to 10.5 percent, and renewable capacity increasing its share to 31.1 percent.