US wind energy industry vaults over 50 GW milestone

» By | Published 15 Aug 2012 |

Denise Bode, AWEA

Newsrooms, websites and social media have been enthusiastically reporting this past week that the United States wind power sector now has installed at least 50 gigawatts of electric generating capacity.

Chuck Grassley, a Republican Senator from Iowa, said in an American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) press release that attaining 50 GW of wind energy is a milestone for the US sector. “This milestone for wind-energy production marks continued success for this clean, renewable and domestically produced energy source,” Grassley said.

Frank Lucas, a Republican Representative from Oklahoma, also called the new level of installed wind power a milestone: “It is amazing that 50,000 megawatts of our nation’s power is generated from clean and affordable wind energy,” Lucas said. “This is a very big milestone for the wind industry.”

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US debate over extending PTC continues to create wind power uncertainty

» By | Published 05 Jul 2012 |

Nancy Sutley, White House Council on Environmental Quality

As US citizens prepare for the summer season and federal politicians lobby for votes in the upcoming November election, an increasingly acrimonious debate over extending the nation’s main wind power incentive continues.

On Monday, Nancy Sutley, President Barack Obama’s principal environmental advisor and Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, joined other politicians in Saint Paul, Minnesota to highlight the need for Congress to extend the existing Production Tax Credit (PTC).

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US government support for wind power means jobs

» By | Published 05 Jun 2012 |

EWEA Communications Director Julian Scola

Julian Scola, EWEA’s Communication Director, is attending the American Wind Energy Association’s Windpower event in Atlanta…in this blog he reports the latest wind energy news from the US…

American jobs and manufacturing is the rallying cry of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) in its efforts to get the vital ‘Production Tax Credit’ extended.

The PTC is the main Federal support for wind energy and runs out at the end of the year. The uncertainty has already led to job losses and projects being shelved.

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Wind energy and other renewables much cheaper than coal

» By | Published 07 Mar 2012 |

Electricity from wind energy and other renewables is close to one-third cheaper than electricity from a new coal-fired plant, according to a US report published by the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPRS) to the state legislature.

The report found that average costs over the life cycle of renewable energy systems equalled €69.5 per megawatt-hour (MWh) while the cost for a new coal fired power plant totalled €101 per MWh.

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Students in Texas enjoyed learning about the many benefits of wind power

» By | Published 18 Jun 2010 |

About 50 junior school children from Grand Prairie, Texas who completed a two-week course on wind power learned about Global Wind Day, turbines and offshore wind farms, according to Kyle Damon, who organised the unique program.

Damon, a science and technology facilitator at David Daniels Elementary, said the students who were between 8 and 10 years old used reading, writing, mathematics and science to understand wind power.

“It was everything wind,” Damon said in a telephone interview with the European Wind Energy Association. “Everyone enjoyed it.”
The students learned about the history of wind, the power-generating industry, turbines and pitch, he said, adding one group of students even built a model offshore wind farm in a tray of water.

“The kids loved [the course] and the teachers had fun with it.” Damon said the idea for the course came about because the wind power sector is becoming such a large industry in Texas.

Earlier in the week, Global Wind Day was promoted by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) which urged citizens to lobby Congress to pass a “Renewable Electricity Standard” as a way of attracting the investment required to continue the growth in wind power and other renewable energies.

Among other Global Wind Day-related events, AWEA highlighted five highly beneficial facts that wind power offers the US, which is, after China, the second largest emitter of greenhouse gasses from burning fossil fuels.

“Global Wind Day is a great opportunity to underscore that wind works because it is vital to our nation’s economic, energy, and environmental security,” Denise Bode, AWEA CEO said in a press release. “With our ‘Five Wind Facts,’ we hope to encourage more citizens to get involved in the campaign to increase America’s use of wind energy, and to call on Congress to pass a strong national Renewable Electricity Standard as part of energy and climate legislation.”

The association noted that wind power creates a significant number of new jobs, offers financial help to farmers and rural communities, provides long-term stable electricity prices for consumers, is an inexhaustible and reliable generation source, and mitigates environmental degradation by reducing greenhouse gasses caused by destructive fossil fuels.

According to the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), the US wind power sector installed nearly 10,000 megawatts (MW) of new generating capacity in 2009, enough to serve over 2.4 million average American homes. The 9,996 MW installed last year expanded the US wind plant fleet by 39% and brought total wind power generating capacity in the nation to over 35,000 MW.

GWEC also notes that wind energy is now operating in 36 of the 50 US states, with Texas the leader with more than 9,000 MW of total installed capacity.

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