LONDON, July 26 (Reuters) - Europe looks set to install 13.5 gigawatts (GW) of new wind power capacity this year, slightly lower than last year’s record of 15.6 GW, according to estimates by industry group WindEurope.
In the first half of this year, Europe installed 3.3 GW of onshore wind, mainly in Germany, France and Denmark. A further 1.1 GW of new offshore wind capacity was also added, mainly in Britain, Belgium and Denmark.
For the whole of the year, 10.2 GW of new onshore wind and 3.3 GW of new offshore wind is expected.
“We are on track for a solid year in new wind farm installations but the growth is driven by just a handful of markets,” WindEurope’s chief policy officer Pierre Tardieu said in a statement.
WindEurope expects a drop in France’s new installations because of administrative issues, which have resulted in the country’s latest auction being under-subscribed.
“In offshore wind, Europe is too dependent on the UK, which is striding ahead in current installations and in committing to future volumes,” Tardieu said.
“By contrast, the rate of new installations has slowed down in Germany. Other countries also need to beef up and speed up their plans on offshore wind,” he added.
The new German government has also been slow to reveal when 4 GW of new onshore wind promised for 2019-20 will be auctioned and to confirm auction volumes beyond that. (Reporting by Nina Chestney; Editing by Dale Hudson)