Giles Dickson is CEO of WindEurope, the wind energy trade association. He spoke to EURACTIV’s energy and environment editor, Frédéric Simon.
Europe claims to be a leader in renewable energy but it seems to have been leapfrogged by China on solar and wind power. Is Europe still a leader? And what would it take to reclaim this position?
Europe is no longer number one in renewables – that is very clear. And we haven’t been for a while now. China has overtaken Europe in terms of installed capacity for wind, the Chinese market for newly installed wind capacity is twice as large as the European market so China has installed twice as many wind turbines as Europe every year at the moment.
And it doesn’t look like changing. Europe still produces the world’s best technology for wind power and European companies still have a very significant share of the global market for wind turbines.
…including those that are being installed in China?
Less so in China. There, it’s really the Chinese turbine manufacturers that dominate the market. But in Latin America, the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, the European turbine manufacturers are competing very well still. We have globally a 40% share of all the wind turbines sold.
But to maintain a strong market share, we need to have a buoyant domestic market. And as things stand, the level of ambition around Europe is not going to give us that strong domestic market.
You’re talking about the EU’s set of proposals contained in the so-called clean energy package for 2030?