Wind Wire: Strong growth

Total installed wind power capacity in continental Portugal at end-June 2009 was 3.34 GW across 187 wind farms, according to the latest figures by the General Directorate for Energy and Geology (DGEG).

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Some 38% of that was distributed among plants of capacity below 25 MW. In comparison, installed wind at the end of 2008 was 2.77 GW at 172 wind farms. Meantime, Portugal had total installed renewable energy capacity of 8.76 GW at end-June. In comparison to last year, total electricity production from renewable energy sources was down 24%, mainly due to a drop in hydro production in the first quarter. Wind energy production in the first six months of 2009, though, was up 17% on the same period in 2008. In the month of June, it was 16% higher year on year. The districts with the highest installed power were Viseu (590 MW), C.Branco (475 MW), Coimbra (428 MW), Castelo (332 MW), Lisboa (272 MW), V.Real (240 MW), Leiria (229 MW), Braga (150 MW) and Guarda (146 MW). As of June, a total 4.24 GW of wind power was licensed. DGEG forecasts that Portugal could close 2009 with 3.80 GW of installed wind power.

WestWind Energia (WWE) has agreed with the Municipal Assembly of Ferreira do Alentejo to build a EUR65-104 million, 50-80 MW wind farm in the area, which lies in the Beja district of south-central Portugal. Confirmation of the project and its size will depend on the evolution of a favourable subsidised wind regime and the existence of enough wind potential in Ferreira do Alentejo to make the project economically viable, according to WWE. The WestWind group has already built and manages 35 wind farms and is aiming for an installed capacity of over 1800 MW in six European countries by 2012.

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