The European Union reached a record installation figure in 2006 with an additional 7,613.3 MW, bringing total installed EU capacity up to 48,042.3 MW. The year was marked by some pleasant surprises and confirmations, like the return to growth of the German market, the take off of the French market, the confirmation of the firmness of the British market, as well as confirmation of the spectacular growth of the Portuguese market. EurObserv’ER presents this sector’s current state of development in its latest barometer, published in issue number 177 of Systèmes Solaires.
48,042.3 MW in EU
After three years of decrease, the German market is growing once again with 2,233.1 MW installed in 2006, establishing Germany’s total installed capacity at 20,621.9 MW. This represents 425 MW more than in 2005 and corresponds to 23.5% market growth. Spain continued to be the second biggest European Union market in 2006 with an additional 1,587.2 MW being installed, bringing it’s total installed capacity up to 11,615.1 MW. Italy’s market declined with respect to 2005, with 417 MW installed in 2006 vs. 453 MW during the previous year. The UK wind power market has confirmed its rise in importance with an additional 630.8 MW, including the 90 MW of the Barrow offshore park. UK installed wind power capacity is thus established at 1,962.9 MW, including 303.8 MW offshore. In 2006, France became the third biggest market in the EU ahead of the UK with 879.4 MW, i.e. a French total (including the French overseas departments and territories) of 1,635 MW. Portugal’s total installed capacity is slightly higher. An additional 673.4 MW installed in 2006 established total Portuguese installed capacity at 1,716.4 MW, confirming this market’s rapid rise.