Latin America will likely double its installed wind power capacity by 2022, reaching a total 34.1GW, up from the current 17.9GW, while growth will be led by Argentina and Mexico, where projects awarded in recent auctions will come online.
The Global Wind Energy Council's (GWEC) predictions show that the region will add around 3.4GW this year, almost 1GW more than was added in 2017, as investments in the sector continue, and while a transformation is taking place as the power source becomes commercially viable, according to the council's most recent market report.
"What we are seeing across the globe is a transformation of markets for wind power away from the support schemes that gave birth to the industry, with wind taking its place as purely commercial technology, increasingly operating without subsidies or support mechanisms."
And while the GWC predicts a relatively flat market for 2018, a rapid return to growth is expected in 2019 and 2020.
To end-2017, Brazil led installed wind capacity in Latin America, with 12,763MW, followed by Mexico, with 4,005MW, and Chile and Uruguay, with 1,540MW and 1,505MW respectively.
"Argentina is a market that needs growth and development, it has been neglected for a number of decades, and there are now major players are participating in the auctions down there," Peter Tattersfield, an advisor at Invenergy, a developer that operates 35 wind farms in Latin America, told BNamericas.
And while Mexico is on course to have wind farms installed in 17 states by 2020, up from the current 10, and increase installed capacity to 12,896MW by that year, Tattersfield does not believe that the country is anywhere near peak capacity.
"I think if you follow what's taken place in other, more mature markets, such as the US, prime sites will disappear, but technology doesn't stop, and by 2025 we'll see turbines grow taller, with 150-180m-high towers, blade diamaters of 150m, and you will be able to produce in low-wind environments.
I think there will be ample opportunities for growth and development. We haven't even touched offshore, or low-wind regimes, and I anticipate that Mexico will be an attractive market for the next 10-15 years," he said.
Read this report to understand the dynamic wind market in many of the major economies in Latin America.
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