Coronavirus takes wind out of renewables market

Posted in Sustainability

Forecasted output in the wind power market in 2020 is set to be downgraded due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The amount of energy produced by turbines was on an upward trajectory and forecast to grow by 20 per cent this year, however, the economic slowdown has led to a reduction in the number of turbine installations.

GlobalData noted that total annual installations for wind power reached 2.7GW in 2019 but estimates for 2020 were now around the 980MW mark.

“The average energy demand in the UK declined by 13% after the UK Government announced the lockdown. The output of existing wind farms could significantly decrease due to the supply chain, travel bans and deferred maintenance. In addition, a shortage of engineering staff due to the lockdown could delay critical operational and maintenance (O&M) work at project sites,” GlobalData’s senior power analyst Somik Das said.

“Under normal circumstances, fixing a broken rotor or gearbox typically takes no longer than a month but now it could see up to six months of downtime on a particular turbine, which is quite significant for the wind industry as a whole. Thus, the performance of the wind sector in the second half of the year will be of critical importance for the UK.”

The ramifications of the coronavirus has affected other areas of the green energy sector with solar capacity predicted to fall 16 per cent compared to previous estimates.

Meanwhile, the planned rollout of EV charger installations has been put on hold, contributing to a slowdown in the sales of EVs.

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