Article

End of life options for wind generation

In this report we explore the current state of the UK windy industry and the issues pertaining to turbine end of life.

Current state of play and the way forward

Sustainability is at the forefront of public consciousness after COP26, with a drive for clean energy at the centre of climate action. While the next 10 years have been dubbed the ‘make or break decade’, renewable energy has been gathering pace in the UK for some time.

Indeed, the UK’s first commercial windfarm was commissioned in 1991. As more focus is placed on renewable energy and the drive for net-zero, the need to assess the current state of the wind industry becomes more pressing. In order to truly optimise onshore and offshore wind, now is the time to ensure the infrastructure is fit for purpose — and if it isn’t, to put in place the changes needed.

Today 34,000 turbines are 15 years or older, representing 36 gigawatts (GW) of onshore wind capacity. Out of these 36GW, some 9GW came from 20-24 year-old turbines and around 1GW came from turbines 25 years or older. This creates a big market for decommissioning of onshore wind farms over the next decade1.

To read more please download our full report.

1 WindEurope Decommissioning of onshore wind turbines – industry guidance document November 2020.

Report

End of life options for wind generation

Current state of play and the way forward 

Meet the authors

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David Palmer

Senior Vice President, Power and Renewable Energy

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Pandora Wilson

Claims Advocate, Energy and Power