As Industry consolidation continues through merger and takeover, the trend continues towards large global players who have the finance to bring 5MW turbines to market in the numbers that are going to be needed. This growth of the manufacturing sector is creating improved conditions for many of the smaller wind focused companies who collectively provide the entire suite of specialist services necessary if the industry is to grow to match Kyoto's targets. It is clear that policy support at national government level can speed up the shift towards wind and other renewable energy sources by installing enlightened regulations and appropriate feed in tariffs. The recent pressures on the global oil market can only improve wind’s position within the development policies of governments, especially within the US.
Wind Turbine Developments
Economies of scale are encouraging larger and larger turbines to be developed. Turbines rated as 5MW can now be bought off the shelf, while components suitable for future turbines of 7.5MW are now being developed and tested. This growth in turbine size is encouraging and enabling both the repowering of existing wind farm sites and the proposal of large new off-shore farms which would have been considered uneconomic with the small turbines available ten years ago.
Wind Energy Jobs
As the industry grows and matures, the demand for technical expertise is being extended to expertise in the softer areas such as PR, community liaison, environmental impact, etc. The sector offers capable and energetic individuals vast potential to succeed in an industry which is growing faster than any other. The international nature of the wind industry means that individuals with additional language skills are especially valued.
The successful implementation of wind energy projects tends to rely on a wide partnership of players, both large and small. Therefore, depending on personal preference, it is possible to choose to work with either small companies providing a specialist niche product or very large companies such as the international power utility giants, which are now developing wind energy teams.
Getting a Job in Wind Energy
There are an increasing number of specialist employment areas within the Wind Energy sector. Whilst many vacancies require an engineering background, many other good opportunities are available for individuals who may lack direct experience within the wind power sector, but who have enthusiasm and sought-after transferable skills.