United Kingdom bets on wind energy

United Kingdom, world champion of offshore wind energy, has made the sector one of the pillars of its transition to carbon neutrality and wants to quadruple its capacity to generate this type of electricity by 2030.

Thanks to its windswept territories in the North Sea “it is easier to capture offshore wind power in the United Kingdom than anywhere else in Europe,” said James Brabben of the Cornwall Insight energy consultancy.

Wind power generation on the high seas is also favored by a “favorable political framework, which enjoys a broad consensus among the general public and among politicians,” said the specialist.

The Boris Johnson government, which since the early legislative elections in December has an overwhelming majority in Parliament, set the goal of producing 40 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind power by 2030 during the campaign, compared to almost 10 today.

Combined with wind turbines, solar, hydro and biomass, the United Kingdom, which wants to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, already produces almost 40% of its electricity from renewable sources, according to published quarterly data last week.

The goal of the United Kingdom is to develop large wind farm projects, one of the main advantages of offshore wind energy, since “it allows to build wind turbines parks much larger than on land,” said Brabben.

The 38 operational wind farm facilities listed at the end of 2018 by Crown Estate, the agency responsible for managing the assets of the British crown, which owns most of the country’s seabed, include about 2,000 wind turbines, and almost 1,000 more are planned.

The two main current wind farm fields are Walney Extension, in North Wales, and London Array, at the mouth of the Thames, wind corridors that concentrate most of the British offshore wind farms.