For achieving its overall EU renewable energy target, requiring it to source 13% of all energy from renewables by 2020, the role envisioned by Hungary's government for wind is small, with the sector accounting for just 0.5% of total energy supplies. But that does not mean it will be insignificant, says Miklos Poos, director of the country's energy department in the economy ministry. The government estimates 1700 GWh of electricity could be produced from wind in 2020, or 3.7% of forecast electricity consumption for that year of 45,750 GWh. In terms of renewable electricity generation, wind would account for 18% of the total 9470 GWh expected.
To achieve those aims, cumulative installed capacity would need to increase to 830-930 MW, up from less than 130 MW at end 2008 (Windpower Monthly, March 2009). The current 330 MW cap on development is to be scrapped soon, says Poos. "The cap is the absorption capacity of the Hungarian national grid, but it is under review," he says. The government, he adds, is examining how it can best ensure the volume of wind capacity it needs is built. "I think there will be a tender system or something like that," he says.
If that happens, the Hungarian Wind Energy Association (HWEA) may revise its current 2020 forecasts, which are distinctly pessimistic in comparison with those of the government. In a middle-of-the-road scenario, HWEA foresees 450-500 MW installed by 2020, accounting for just 2% of all electricity. Meanwhile, Poos says Hungary's current incentive system for renewables, which offers guaranteed power purchase prices adjusted annually in line with inflation, could change. "In the medium or long-term we are thinking of introducing a green certificates system," he says. "No decision has been made yet." Under the current system, the average price for wind power is currently HUF 28.13 (EUR0.097/kWh).
Heather O'Brian, Windpower Monthly