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During the fifth annual offshore conference in London, the BWEA, together with Renewables East, the renewable energy agency for the East of England, released  new research which shows that the offshore wind industry is at a critical crossroads.

The report, Offshore Wind: At a Crossroads, undertaken over the past four months through extensive interviews with over 30 companies active in the sector, has shown that without additional support for the sector only 2,000MW of offshore wind capacity will be installed in UK waters by 2015.

This is only 25% of what is possible over the next ten years. The major reason cited for the difference between what is possible and what is expected is the gap between the current costs of developing offshore wind and the revenues available to developers through the current Renewables Obligation.

The report also examines what level of new offshore capacity could be built if a new policy impetus was put in place by the Government. The report identifies that the industry could deliver some 8,000MW of offshore wind capacity by 2015. This amount of development is equivalent to 6% of UK electricity supply, representing some £10 billion of investment. BWEA is urging the Government to ensure it prioritises offshore wind in the current Energy Review and to put in place the necessary measures to ensure the current economic gap for offshore wind is closed while maintaining the strong progress being achieved onshore.
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