The UK offshore wind industry “entered the Premier League” in 2018, according to a new report from The Crown Estate, which manages the seabed off England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Last year, 1GW of offshore wind was installed in UK waters, taking the country’s cumulative capacity to 7.9GW, with a further 5.8GW under construction or having finance secured, according to the latest iteration of the Crown Estate’s Offshore Wind Operational Report.
2018 also saw the completion of the world’s largest offshore wind farm, the 659MW Walney Extension in the Irish Sea, which helped to push output from the sector to a record 26.6TWh — enough to power 26% of UK homes. Offshore wind accounted for 8% of the country’s energy mix — just behind onshore wind (9.1%), but above coal (5.0%), solar (3.9%) and hydro (1.6%).
“Like the football Premier League, this has become a global success story impacting the lives of millions and generating excitement and opportunity across the country,” stated Huub den Rooijen, director of energy, minerals and infrastructure.
In February, the Global Wind Energy Council said that the UK installed 1.3GW of offshore wind in 2018, in second place behind China, with 1.8GW.