According to WindEurope’s latest report wind energy represented 300,000 jobs in Europe and contributed €37bn to the EU Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2019. And each newly installed wind turbine generated €10m in new economic activity. Wind will also benefit communities. Wind farms pay €5bn in taxes every year, often to deprived rural municipalities. They also contribute to community benefit funds. So for a green economic recovery it is good to invest in wind.
If Governments fulfil the ambitions of their National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) Europe will have 397 GW of wind by 2030. And 50% more jobs – 450,000 people. This will significantly boost the contribution of Europe’s wind industry to the economy. But the underlying policy measures fail to deliver this. There is not enough visibility on how and when Governments will auction new wind farms. And they fail to simplify the permitting process.
The report shows Europe is a global leader in wind energy technology. There are 248 manufacturing sites in Europe. And European wind turbine manufacturers have a 42% global market share. To keep the strategic supply chains in Europe, Governments must continue the development of onshore and offshore wind. And increase R&D spending to support incremental improvements in wind energy.
“Investing in wind will help Europe reset its economy. Each new turbine generates €10m of economic activity. There’s a pipeline of new projects waiting to start. And the expansion of wind energy envisaged in the National Energy & Climate Plans will create 150,000 new jobs. Provided Governments implement their Plans properly. If they don’t implement them properly, and if they don’t simplify the permitting arrangements for new wind farms, then we’ll lose jobs”, says WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson.
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