The next decade will be pivotal for the energy industry. The world’s leading economies such as the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, China, and Latin America have claimed their intents to employ green energy in their all economic activities and bring closure to the era of coal-dependency. The transfer to renewables is well supported by the governments that align their efforts to help both the developed and developing countries implement green technologies. Below we’ve collected the key insights of wind energy from 2025-2030.
Europe: Expectations for Wind Energy in 2025
In 2020, 14.7 GW of new wind capacity was installed in Europe which is 6% less than that in 2019. The decrease was caused by the COVID-19 lockdown when companies had to cancel new projects. 16.4% of the total electricity demand of both the United Kingdom and the European Union was satisfied by wind energy in 2020.
Offshore installations comprised 20% of total new wind capacity in Europe, with the majority of them placed in the Netherlands, comprising 1.98 GW, while 1.5 GW of wind capacity was installed in Norway in 2020, followed by 1.4 GW established in Germany.
By 2025, 105 GW of new wind capacity will be installed in Europe, with nearly 70% in onshore wind turbines.
The UK is already seen as a leader in wind energy in Europe, a trend which will continue; by 2025, the country is expected to install a total wind capacity of 18 GW in addition to the 24.1 GW in 2020. The International Energy Agency estimates that the UK will be followed by Germany with 16 GW, France with 12 GW, Sweden with 7 GW, and the Netherlands with 6 GW of wind capacity.
Wind and solar energy capacities are expected to grow by 1123 GW in total in 2020-2025 globally, at a 95% increase per year until 2025. Remarkably, in 2023, wind and PV combined shall exceed the capacity of natural gas, and in 2024 – the capacity of coal.
By 2025, over 180 GW of global wind capacity will be 15+ years old. This means that a huge number of installations will require substantial refurbishment. 86 GW of this is in Europe, 39 GW in the US and 30 GW in China, while the rest is distributed across other regions. The anticipated renovation would allow for higher capacity and extended efficiency from fewer wind turbines. However, the risks of backsliding are high for the existing market participants – since many wind farms will be down for maintenance, new industry actors will get the chance to enter the market and influence its trends.
Looking back at 2020, the International Energy Agency found that COVID-19 resulted in a 5% decrease in global energy demand as many companies had to close during lockdowns.
The IEA predicts that wind energy will make up 30% of the global renewable energy capacity by 2015, while solar energy will comprise 60%.
Evolving technologies and the future renovation of wind farms will enable a decline in renewable energy cost which altogether shall result in a much higher acceptance of green energy worldwide.
Consequently, green energy is expected to cover 13% of the global electricity demand by 2025.
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Wind Energy Forecast for 2030
According to a new report from Frost & Sullivan, USD$3.4 trillion will be invested in renewable energy globally by 2030. $2.72 trillion of this will go to wind and solar projects. The report predicts that nearly half of all energy-producing programmes will take place in the renewable energy market.
Vasanth Krishnan, Senior Research Analyst, Industrial Practice, Frost & Sullivan, says, “Decentralisation, decarbonisation and digitalisation are the three key pillars of the global energy transition. The power sector will witness strong growth in decentralisation during the decade, with annual global investment increasing from $53.14 billion in 2019 to $92.54 billion in 2030.”
Smart Management of Renewables
The renewables market is quickly switching to smart management through the adoption of cutting-edge digital technologies in current and future projects.
Nick Grebenkine, a private investor in renewable energy, reckons, “Nowadays we cannot imagine our lives without digital products that incredibly simplify our lives. It would be weird to develop a next-generation wind farm incompatible with any modern software. We must invest more in the development of green tech solutions because digitization brings flexibility and agility for all market participants. As a green tech investor, I believe that cloud technologies, artificial intelligence, blockchain, and robotics are going to be a must-have for the green energy industry.”
By combining AI-powered robots with blockchain-secured distributed storage, a power plant operator will delegate the scrupulous physical and mental routine to AI that can complete repeated actions for years.
The result of the green and tech symbiosis will be simplified operation, immutable remote control, faster reaction, and less human involvement. These factors will help to reduce renewable energy generation price and make it more affordable in regions worldwide.
Growth in Regions by 2030
The renewable energy market is expected to double in North America to comprise $1,370 billion by 2030. Why will it boost so fast? As prices for fossil fuel-based electricity continue growing in the US, consumers and producers are switching to renewables so as to spend less money on their energy demand. The US government pays close attention to this switch and develops regulations to streamline the process. Thus, following the “Biden Plan for Climate Change and Environmental Justice” in 2021, $400 billion will be spent on clean technologies research and development through 2030 in the US. The resolution will accelerate renewable energy programmes, attracting more investment to the market.
Fast growth of population in Latin America has forced regional governments to accelerate the tempo of electrification. Due to uneven terrains in the region, authorities have high hopes for distributed energy generation systems based on green energy. At the moment, LATAM covers 25% of its electricity demand with renewable sources, and their next objective is to increase this number to 70% by 2030. This is a time of great opportunities for investors to drive the local market.
$12.91 billion will be invested yearly in battery storage in Europe to comprise 70.02 GW in 2030. The trend is actively supported by multiple European startups focusing on distributed energy storage and energy trading.
As part of its carbon-free programme for 2060, China continues to invest heavily in its renewables initiatives. The country is expected to have 62% of the global battery storage production capacity by 2030.
In the Middle East, governments tend to rely more on renewable energy sources in the next decades. Thus, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Iran have announced their plans to lead the solar PV market.Since 2006, UAE constructs Masdar city in Abu Dhabi, the world’s first hi-tech city projected as a hub for cleantech companies that will utilize only renewable energy.
An interesting fact is that the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) was the first company that opened its office under the tent in Masdar City. With this strong leader, Masdar and UAE will grow as the epicenter of green energy expertise, analytics and predictions. Masdar City development is in full swing and shall be completed by 2030.
Blockchain for Renewables
Blockchain can become a key technology for renewables thanks to its decentralised nature, high security and data history tracking. In wind farm software, blockchain will ensure failure-free operation of the system along with data integrity.
Electricity providers, renewable energy unit owners, energy exchange network operators, financial services and traders can safely buy and sell electricity directly to each other through a blockchain-based energy trading platform, powered by encryption with smart contracts.
Encryption with smart contracts enables transactions with no risk of fraud or hacking. Encrypted data cannot be deleted or changed without prior consent from its owners and sharers.
Blok-Z, a green tech startup, has developed a blockchain-based platform for recording all information about ownership over energy resources availability and consumption, with the automated settlement, auditing and back-office management.
Enosi, another green tech company, has established a blockchain-powered energy trading platform that allows the trade-off of energy without requiring microgrids or incumbent grid partners.
As a result of the $3.4 trillion investment in renewables by 2030, we may see coal-free countries in Europe, followed by local carbon-free states in the US, India and China. The evolution of renewable energy is closely linked to hi-tech advancements which should immediately be applied to current and future energy projects.