Increase of 74% for Land-Based, and 48% for Offshore Wind Turbines
For years we've heard about how a shortage of silicon kept solar panel prices higher than they would otherwise be. Just as we're expecting supply to improve in that field, we learn that wind turbines are getting more expensive. Not just a little, but a lot:
"The price of offshore turbines rose 48 percent to 2.23 million euros ($3.45 million) per megawatt in the past three years, according to BTM Consult APS, a Danish wind power consultant. By comparison, land-based rotors cost 1.38 million euros per megawatt after rising 74 percent in the same period."
Wind Industry not Immune to Supply and Demand
This has a good and bad side. The bad one is obvious, but it's worth explaining the good.
Part of the cost increase comes from higher commodity prices, and that's bad both for wind turbine makers and for wind turbine buyers (it's only good to mining companies), but part of it also has to do with extremely high demand. As we reported recently, GE can't make wind turbines fast enough and there's certainly no recession going on for the wind power industry.
Money to be Made with Wind Power
The fact that demand is so high pushes prices upward, but that will only serve to attract more players; investors will see that there's money to be made with wind power and large industrial companies might shift more resources to their wind power divisions. In fact, demand has been high for long enough to show the market that wind power is not simply a passing fad.
So we're kind of happy and sad simultaneously. We wish wind was much cheaper, but the way to get to that point is probably to go through some more of this "demand outstrips supply" phase.
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More on Wind Turbine Costs Going Up
::Shell, E.ON Stall Offshore Wind Projects EU Needs
::Wind Turbine Costs Up