IRENA Report Analyzes Lowering Costs of Wind Power

IRENA6 June 2012: The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) released a new report titled “Renewable Energy Technologies: Cost Analysis Series – Wind Power, ” which finds onshore wind has become highly competitive and wind turbine prices have recently started to fall, while offshore wind farms are more expensive.

The report provides an overview of wind power technologies and resources, global wind market power trends, the current cost of wind power, wind power cost reduction potentials, and the levelized cost of electricity from wind power. The report mentions that until 2008, growth in the wind market was driven by Europe, while since then new capacity has mainly been added in North America and China.

On costs, it notes that in the medium- to long-term, reductions in capital costs on the order of 10% to 30% could be achieved from learning-by-doing, improvements in the supply chain, increased manufacturing economies of scale, competition, and more investment in research and development. However, costs will continue to be higher for offshore than for onshore wind farms.

The report is part of IRENA's Renewable Energy Technologies: Cost Analysis Series, a set of five reports on wind, biomass, hydropower, concentrating solar power and solar pholtovoltaics that address the current costs of key renewable power technology options. [IRENA Press Release]  [Publication: Renewable Energy Technologies: Cost Analysis Series – Wind Power]