New installations of solar PV once again topped wind in the EU last year, although the gap narrowed significantly.
Some 11,010MW of PV capacity was added last year across the
EU, compared to 10,917MW of wind, according to new figures from the European
Wind Energy Association.
By comparison, PV had an edge of nearly 5GW over wind in 2012.
2013 will likely prove the first year in which more PV was added globally
than wind, some analysts have predicted, although the final figures are not yet
Wind and PV collectively accounted for 63% of the EU’s new
generation capacity last year, crushing other technologies like gas, which
accounted for 22% of new capacity, coal (5.5%) and biomass (4%).
While 7.5GW of new gas capacity was added, another 10GW of
existing capacity was decommissioned, meaning that gas lost significant ground within
Europe’s overall energy system.
Despite several impressive countrywide performances, the
overall European wind market shrank by 8% last year due to “significant
volatility” across various countries, EWEA says.
Just two countries – Germany and the UK – accounted for 45%
of Europe’s wind installations last year, a level of concentration not seen
since 2007, when Denmark, Germany and Spain dominated the market.
By the end of 2013,
wind accounted for 13% of Europe’s installed power-generation capacity, up from
just 2% in 2000, according to Brussels-based EWEA.
PV’s share grew from practically nothing to 9% during the
same period, while coal’s share fell from 25% to 17%.