In 2020, there is 150 GW onshore wind farms and 22 GW offshore farms in Europe.
290 GW of onshore wind farms and 100 GW of offshore wind farms are planned for 2030.
In 2050, there will be 750 GW onshore wind farms and 450 GW offshore wind farms in Europe.
Onshore wind is the cheapest form of new power generation in most of Europe. As it uses the local wind resource it also reduces Europe’s fossil fuel imports – by €10bn pa. Total cost of producing one MWh is:
- 46-63 euros in the onshore wind farm
- In the offshore wind farm 62-83 euros
- Solar enerrgy 64-85 euros
- Fossil fuels 70-95 euros.
Onshore wind farms bring significant benefits to communities in the local taxes they pay and other financial contributions they make. Polls across Europe show that 75-80% of those who live near wind farms support them.
The 300,000 wind jobs in Europe are mostly in onshore wind. Many of them are in rural, remote or deprived areas. Wind contributes €37bn to EU GDP. 75% of these are in onshore wind and 25% in offshore wind. Each GW of onshore wind Europe builds supports around 5,000 jobs in planning, manufacturing and installation. The ongoing operation and maintenance of wind farms supports jobs too
65% of this adds value to the EU economy. So for every €1,000 of revenues, €650 stay in the EU and contribute to taxes and its GDP. The other €350 go to companies that supply materials and equipment from outside the EU – including European companies with facilities abroad.
The wind industry today generates €2.5bn of value added to the EU economy for each new GW of onshore wind installed and €2.1bn for each new GW of offshore wind1 . These amounts per GW will continue to 2030 even with expected cost reductions. Each billion euros invested in a marine park will create 463 jobs.
The wind energy industry pays €5bn in taxes to the EU economy, including €1bn in local taxes and other payments benefiting communities.
The European wind industry invests 5% of its revenue in research and development.
Wind energy production does not emit greenhouse gases or pollutants, uses almost no water and produces less than a year of energy for wind turbines. Well-planned, located and managed wind farms have a minimal impact on the environment.
The life of a wind generator is 25 to 35 years, followed by either dismantling or repowering the equipment in the wind generator.
85-90% of the materials used in the windmill can be recycled. The most difficult thing is to reuse wind turbine blades, a solution is being found to this issue and they are already being used as a raw material in the cement industry.