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At the European Wind Energy Association’s 2013 Annual Event, held in Vienna, Robert Clover of MAKE Consulting suggested that wind energy will be able to supply Europe with half of its power needs by 2050, stating that “after 2020, wind will be the cheapest technology, it is scalable and it has minimal water requirement.”
Fatih Birol, the chief economist at the International Energy Agency, also attended the event and stated that nearly all onshore wind projects in the EU will be competitive with natural gas in the near future.
Onshore wind is expected to achieve grid parity with the other energy technologies within the EU by around 2015, and then offshore wind projects would shortly follow in 2022 or 2023.
Related article: Has Belgium Cracked the Problem of Storing Wind Power Electricity?
However, Anni Podimata, the Vice President of the European Parliament, claimed that Europe’s current economic crisis, which is expected to endure for the year, will most likely have a negative impact on the growth of the renewable energy sector; although having said that she does add that “despite the crisis renewables remain one of the most dynamic sectors in Europe.”
As a result of the economic crisis renewables have seen bank lending and government support decline in recent times, but institutional investors such as insurance firms and pension funds have taken up the slack, increasing their investments in the renewable sector.
By. Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com