Installed wind power capacity around the world is today producing more than 150 terawatt hours of electricity a year, roughly equivalent to the total electricity consumption in Poland or Sweden, or the combined requirements of Belgium, Denmark and Ireland, according to an analysis of national capacity factors around the world published in WindStats Newsletter, a sister publication to Windpower Monthly. Electricity production data from 15 states -- representing around 85% of the nearly 79,000 MW of world wind energy capacity -- suggests the average global capacity factor is nearly 22%. Pride of place goes to Australia, with a capacity factor of 0.37, followed by Ireland (0.32), Greece (0.28) and the United Kingdom (0.27). Norway, Portugal and the United States all had capacity factors of 0.26. Data used was from 2005, although a similar result would probably be obtained for 2006, had all the data been available. Capacity factors in Denmark and Finland were lower in 2006, but they were higher in France and the US. The national averages include offshore wind production, where capacity factors are generally higher than the overall average. The Horns Rev offshore plant in the Danish North Sea achieved 0.45 in 2005 and 0.43 in 2006; the overall average for Danish offshore wind in 2005 was 0.39. In the UK, the North Hoyle offshore wind plant realised 0.36 in 2005.
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