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Planet Ark World Environment News Wind-power bodies say 2002 global use grew 28 pct

Date: 05-Mar-03
Country: DENMARK

In total a record 6,868 megawatts (MW) was installed worldwide in 2002, taking total wind power to over 31,000 MW, enough to power 7.5 million average American homes or 16 million European homes, they said.

Wind energy is a fast-growing power sector worldwide as countries try to bring down greenhouse gas emissions, which scientists say cause global warming.

Installed generating capacity has increased by an average 32 percent annually for the last five years, giving a tailwind to wind turbine manufacturers. Denmark is home to two of the world's leaders, Vestas Wind Systems (VEST.CO) and NEG Micon (NEG.CO).

Germany is by far the largest wind-power market in the world, with a total of 12,001 MW installed. With around 4,830 MW installed, Spain is now the second-biggest market ahead of the U.S.

The U.S. market has slowed due to the uncertain status of the wind energy production tax credit (PTC), a key federal tax incentive to promote windpower.

Today wind power supplies approximately 0.4 percent of the worlds electricity demand. According to EWEA analysis, there is no reason, either technical or economic, why wind power should not supply 12 percent of global electricity consumption in 2020.

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