January 31, 2011 / 9:55 AM / in 7 years

EU wind power construction slows, coal gains -EWEA

BRUSSELS, Jan 31 (Reuters) - Construction of new wind farms slowed in Europe by about one tenth last year, while coal power construction gathered pace, the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) said on Monday.

Newly installed wind power capacity was 9.3 gigawatts in 2010, compared to 10.5 gigawatts in 2009, the industry body said in a statement.

“For only the second time since 1998, the EU installed more coal power capacity than it decommissioned in 2010,” it added.

It also said a 10-percent decrease in the construction of new onshore wind farms last year was partly offset by a 51 percent increase in new wind farms at sea.

“These figures are a warning that we cannot take for granted the continued financing of renewable energy,” said EWEA chief executive Christian Kjaer.

“Remarkable growth in the onshore wind markets of Romania, Poland and Bulgaria could not make up for the decline in new onshore installations in Spain, Germany and the UK,” he added.

Reporting by Pete Harrison; editing by Rex Merrifield and Keiron Henderson

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