The Austria Wind Energy Association study said that the Green Electricity Act passed in 2011 includes an expansion of the wind turbine energy production from its current 1,900 megawatts to 3,000 megawatts by 2020.
Wind turbines in Austria currently produce 6.5 percent of the country’s domestic electricity consumption, said a new study released Thursday, predicting that the figure could climb to 24 percent by the year 2030.
The association said that 3,800 megawatts are feasible by that year if both politicians and citizens support further expansion, and expects an eventual 6,650 megawatts, enough to cover 24 percent of domestic consumption, could be reached by 2030, through the operation of a total of 2,319 of the turbines.
The estimations take into account currently operating wind turbine projects along with goals set by individual Austrian states as well as declared land areas where the turbines are allowed to be constructed, Der Standard newspaper reported in its online edition.
Hans Winkelmeier, author of the study, said the year 2014 will see the construction of the 1,000th wind turbine in Austria, with 1,039 of the devices to be in operation in the country by the end of the year, an increase of 167 over 2013. The states of Lower Austria and Burgenland are reported to have the highest potential for the wind-powered energy.
Stefan Moidl from the Association said one potential problem for the more environmentally-friendly form of electricity production is a reluctance to move away from coal power, particularly now that it is “cheaper than ever before.”