Development from the Windicator

Around 1000 MW of new wind power has gone up so far this year, about the same volume as that installed by this time in 2003. Of the traditionally main markets, the US and Denmark are temporarily at a standstill, each suffering an energy political hiatus; Germany is holding its own, as is Spain (table). Meantime, Australia, Japan and New Zealand have boosted the Pacific area total, while the little jump in Canada will soon become a leap. Relatively good things are expected of Britain, Ireland, Italy and especially Portugal this year. The prognosis for a relatively slow 2004 for global wind growth may yet be disproved, particularly with indications that order books are full -- some developers are reporting difficulties in buying turbines for supply in 2004.

The global market is set for rapid growth in the next couple of years. There are thousands of megawatts in development and a steady stream of announcements for scheduled grid connection of projects. In many US states the political climate for wind has never been better, if only Congress could end its lawmaking stalemate and reinstate wind's federal tax credit. Australia is set for big gains, though the long term suddenly looks wobbly (page 28). Brazil is ready to add up to 1000 MW and Canada is steadily ramping up. The overall trend is towards ever bigger projects in a much healthier wider spread of geographic markets.

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