The World's #1 Renewable Energy Network for News, Information, and Companies.

Wind Farm Operating Costs Fall 38% in Four Years, BNEF Says

Wind Farm Operating Costs Fall 38% in Four Years, BNEF Says

The cost of running and maintaining wind farms has fallen 38 percent in four years as competition among contractors increased and turbine performance improved, bringing closer the day that the technology matches fossil fuel.

The average price of operation and maintenance contracts for onshore farms this year slid to 19,200 euros ($25,000) a megawatt from 30,900 euros in 2008, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said today. It took data from 38 developers and service providers in more than 24 markets for its first O&M Price Index.

Wind power has done much to improve its competitiveness against gas-fired and coal-fired generation in recent years via lower-cost, more technically advanced turbines and more sophisticated siting and management,” Michael Liebreich, chief executive officer of London-based BNEF, said in the statement.

The figures help inform debate in the U.S. and Britain, where governments are considering how much to subsidize renewable energy. BNEF’s findings show manufacturers led by as Vestas Wind Systems A/S are bringing down prices, making the machines more profitable for power providers to run.

Britain is cutting subsidies for onshore wind by 10 percent as Prime Minister David Cameron’s government discusses halting subsidies once the current renewable energy targets are met. In the U.S., President Barack Obama’s administration is pushing Congress to renew tax credits favoring wind in the face of opposition from Republican lawmakers.

Subsidy Dependence

Without the U.S. credit, the market for wind towers may fall to $100 million to $500 million next year from $2 billion to $2.5 billion at present, BNEF said on July 31.

Declining costs for servicing wind farms are positive for developers of projects, which are suffering from subsidy cuts across Europe and the U.S. Service agreements are also an important additional revenue stream for turbine makers such as Vestas, the world’s largest turbine-maker.

Developers expect O&M pricing to be “fairly stable” to at least 2015 and view turbine makers Enercon GmbH, Siemens AG and Vestas as the best service providers, according to BNEF.

Enercon’s full-service contracts were nearly 20 percent cheaper than the average from 2008 to 2012.

Copyright 2012 Bloomberg

Lead image: Wind turbines via Shutterstock

RELATED ARTICLES

IRENA Global Atlas Pocket

Finding Renewable Energy Opportunities: There's an App for That

Vince Font, Contributing Editor The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) just released a new smartphone app called the Global Atlas Pocket that can turn your smartphone or tablet into your very own personal renewable energy prospector ...
Track and field lane

Uruguay Spends $2.6 Billion to Become South America Wind Leader

Ken Parks, Bloomberg Uruguay hopes to generate as much as 38 percent of its power from wind by the end of 2017, up from about 13 percent now, cementing Uruguay’s position as South America’s top wind-energy user, according to Gonzalo Casaravill...
Wind turbine

Japan Offshore Wind Project to Add Largest Turbine Ever Used at Sea

Chisaki Watanabe, Bloomberg

A floating offshore wind project in northern Japan will soon add a 7-megawatt turbine, the largest of its kind ever to be used at sea.

Timer

EU Raises Concern That UK, France Won't Meet Renewables Goal

Alex Morales and Ewa Krukowska, Bloomberg

The European Commission raised concern that the U.K. and France may not meet their 2020 renewable energy targets, saying the two countries should examine whether they’re doing enough to reach the goals.

CURRENT MAGAZINE ISSUE

Volume 18, Issue 3
1505REW_C11

STAY CONNECTED

To register for our free
e-Newsletters, subscribe today:

FEATURED PARTNERS



EVENTS

Doing Business in South Africa – in partnership with GWEC, the Glob...

Wind Energy in South Africa has been expanding dramatically, growing fro...

Bankability and Support Mechanisms for Renewable Energy Projects

Setting appropriate legal and regulatory frameworks is essential for the...

CRGM - Online Training on Grid Integration of Renewable Energy

The training is useful for persons who would like to learn more about me...

COMPANY BLOGS

The Almost There Markets: Just Give ‘Em Some Time

Earlier this year, we reported on recent legalization of third party fin...

Meteorological Technology International Magazine - SENSORS AND SENS...

Over the past 10 years, these sensing technologies have spread tre...

SunEdison Expands Residential Market Offerings with New PPA, Sales ...

SunEdison has largely focussed on the commercial and utility-scale solar...

SOCIAL ACTIVITY

Tweet the Editors! @megcichon @jennrunyon

NEWSLETTERS

Renewable Energy: Subscribe Now

Solar Energy: Subscribe Now

Wind Energy: Subscribe Now

Geothermal Energy: Subscribe Now

Bioenergy: Subscribe Now  

 

FEATURED PARTNERS