The CEO of Dong Energy, Henrik Poulsen, has said that wind power could soon provide the vast majority of Britain's energy needs. His comments come as Dong Energy prepares to sell off its gas and oil division and strengthen its focus on renewable energy sources.
The company said that it is working to become a world leader in green power, and that the sale of its fossil fuel division will help it to pursue this strategy. It was set up over forty years ago to exploit the oilfields in Denmark's North Sea.
The falling cost of green power was flagged up by Poulsen as a clear marker that solar and wind could overtake fossil fuels far sooner than previously anticipated. He said that this current decade would later be viewed as a turning point when onshore and offshore wind, plus solar, dropped far more drastically in cost than originally expected.
Dong is the biggest windfarm operator in the UK, and it is involved in projects with a capacity of 5GW more than the nuclear reactors planned for Hinkley Point C. Poulsen believes that technological advances in the green energy industry mean that wind energy could supply over 50pc of the UK's total electricity needs. This would be supported by improvements to battery storage capacity, alongside lower costs.
Wind energy has been criticised for its intermittent operation, but technological advancements in battery storage mean that extra wind-derived energy can be stored for usage on days where the turbines aren't spinning.
Dong Energy is now seeking a buyer for its gas and oil business in the North Sea and is engaging with a number of potential buyers. The company also released Q3 figures that showed a leap in profits to £400 million from £55 million in 2015.