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Sweden

Sweden

BUDGET GETS ITS BOOST

The Swedish government has agreed to inject an extra SEK 100 million ($14.3 million) into the country's ongoing market stimulation programme for wind power. The cash will be used to pay 35% of the capital cost of each wind turbine installed. The only cloud over the announcement is that the sum is SEK 50 million short of that requested and is not enough for all the applications now piled on the desk of energy agency Nutek to be successful.

The announcement of the cash injection was music to the ears of the wind community in Sweden. Development had come to a complete stop after government funds ran out (Windpower Monthly, November 1995). The good news was included in a package of measures to stimulate economic growth, presented to the Swedish parliament early last month. Included was a promise for a further SEK 500 million for wind power from 1997. How this will be used has not yet been decided.

Installation of wind turbines in Sweden has been forging ahead at an unprecedented speed over the past two or three months. Some 14 MW has been given the nod of approval for subsidies by Nutek. Most will be erected before the year ends. Installed wind capacity for 1995 will now reach 60 MW and the number of turbines will pass 200. Of these, 30 are in the 500-600 kW size range, with just eight 225 kW turbines.

Applications for another 89 turbines, totalling 42 MW, are being considered by Nutek. The total subsidy sum requested is SEK 147 million and not all projects will be included in the SEK 100 million now available. But during 1996 enough cash is available for installation of a further 30 MW, with the number of turbines increasing to about 260.

Several projects which had been in limbo will now go ahead, including six wind turbines planned for the oil harbour of Hisingen, Gothenburg. The local utility, Göteborg Energi, erected three turbines there a few years ago and turned them over to a local co-operative. Demand for wind generated electricity has continued unabated since, leading to the decision by Göteborg Energi to build six more turbines. One or two of them were to be turned over to the co-operative.

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