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Wind power

Denmark gets more than 30 percent of its power from wind

Last week, Denmark announced the official figures for wind power production in 2012, and the country remains by far the largest consumer of wind power in the world in terms of the share of wind power in overall electricity supply.

Germany continues to draw attention for its Energiewende – and be outstripped by neighboring Denmark. In 2012, the German wind market reached a healthy level of growth for the first time in years and looks poised to continue, but German wind power still makes up less than 10 percent of the country's total power supply.

The Danes, in contrast, have now crossed the 30 percent threshold and are closing in on 50 percent by 2020. In other words, they will have to increase the share of wind power by nearly 3 percent per year for the rest of this decade. In December, the Danes reportedly had 4.2 gigawatts of wind power installed; the country has only 5.5 million inhabitants.

 - The Danes are increasingly installing wind turbines in the waters near the shore.
The Danes are increasingly installing wind turbines in the waters near the shore.
Katharina Wieland-Müller | pixelio.de

The Danish Wind Energy Association says that the Anholt Offshore Wind Farm will boost production considerably in 2013. The project's 400 megawatts will reportedly be enough to cover four percent of Danish power supply. In contrast, roughly 220 megawatts was installed in 2012, 170 of it on land and 50 offshore.

Land is getting scarce in the country, which is therefore increasingly focusing on its extensive shoreline. Over the next few years, the Horns REV III and Krieger's Flak wind farms will add 400 and 600 megawatts, respectively. These two projects are expected to be connected to the grid in 2017 and 2018. An additional 500 megawatts will be spread across smaller projects. Many of these turbines will technically be in the water, but nearshore – and therefore less expensive than wind farms far out in the sea. The term "nearshore wind power" has been coined for such projects. (Craig Morris)

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