French wind power still on the slide

FRANCE: Government figures released last week confirmed the continued slow-down in new wind power installations in France.

Jean-Louis Bal, president of France's Renewable Energy Association
Jean-Louis Bal, president of France's Renewable Energy Association

Just 198MW was added to the grid in the first six months of the year, the government said, compared with 266MW during the same period in 2012 and 467MW in 2011.

With total capacity now standing at 7,821MW (including overseas territories), France needs to install roughly 1.6GW a year to meet its onshore target of 19GW in 2020.

The slow-down is the result of several of factors, including a complex permitting process, the high number of appeals and uncertainty over the onshore tariff.

The Socialist government has been taking steps to simplify the process, including a new law last spring. However, "the emergency measures adopted earlier this year have unfortunately proved insufficient to stem the decline in the markets", warns Jean-Louis Bal, president of the Renewable Energy Association trade body.

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