Into the Eye of the Wind

Posted on January 26, 2010. Filed under: News | Tags: , , , |

Despite the global economic downturn through 2009, total wind capacity in the U.S. grew by nearly 10 gigawatts – enough to power 2.4 million homes – representing a 39% increase from 2008. 

In contrast, solar installations for ’09 amounted to 400 megawatts.  And while wind and natural gas accounted for roughly 80% of the new generating capacity in the U.S. in 2009, it is expected that solar will grow at a 50%/year rate for the next few years (according to GTM Research).

Texas has more wind installations than any other state, with 9.4 gigawatts in the ground.  That will likely continue to expand, as A-Power Technologies from China has announced plans to build one of North America’s largest wind farms in the state.  Iowa is second place, with 3.7 gigawatts.

However, the AWEA warned to not get too complacent.  A lack of a national policy, mounting inventories, and the continuing troubled economic climate resulted in a decline in domestic wind manufacturing for 2009.  This is in stark contrast to the situation in 2007, when long waiting lists existed to get turbines.

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