Data Shows Wind Overtakes Water
According to data released by the American Wind Energy Association on February 9, wind turbines have beat out hydroelectric dams to be America’s top renewable energy source. More than 82,000 megawatts of wind power capacity have been installed in the U.S., while hydropower dams account for about 80,000 megawatts. That puts wind fourth overall as an electricity generator in the country, behind natural gas, coal, and nuclear power. Similar news has been reported across the pond, where the installed capacity of European wind power has overtaken coal to be second overall behind only natural gas.
Of course, installed wind capacity is not the same as generated electricity. Wind still provides a relatively small faction over overall electricity generation, but it is on track to hit 20 percent of production by 2030. Many states, including Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, and the Dakotas already get 20 to 30 percent of their power from wind. All told, 13 states create at least 10 percent of their electricity from wind. And the industry says it is producing significant employment across the country. The Wind Association compares the recent surge in wind power to the rush of hydropower dam building that occurred in the 1930s. They say that wind is driving U.S. manufacturing, especially in the Rust Belt. The group claims that 100,000 Americans work in over 500 wind-related factories across the country.
As more wind power replaces legacy fossil fuel power plants, the price of generating electricity is often going down for a given utility company, especially once incentives and tax advantages are factored in. That price drop does not always make it directly into your tariffed utility rate, but we can help you capture those savings through negotiation.
At Energy Professionals, we work with business owners and managers to help devise long-term energy strategies. We keep an eye on national policy and market trends, and translate innovation into opportunity for our clients. As your energy broker, we can lower your costs and reduce your risk. Contact us to begin your free analysis today.