US wind booms with nearly 30GW on the way

The US wind industry is booming, with a record 29.6GW under construction and in advanced development as of the end of this year’s third quarter. That’s according to a new […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

The US wind industry is booming, with a record 29.6GW under construction and in advanced development as of the end of this year’s third quarter.

That’s according to a new report from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), which suggests the renewable technology is increasingly winning the business of major utilities and big brands, which see it as an affordable, clean and reliable form of generation.

Wind power’s year-over-year construction and advanced development activity in the US is up 27% in 2017.

Utility-owned projects include American Electric Power’s 2GW Wind Catcher project in Oklahoma, Alliant Energy’s 500MW New Wind II project in Iowa and Xcel Energy’s 300MW Dakota Range projects.

Fortune 500 companies such as Target and General Motors are also driving demand – the report suggests they believe the low, stable price of wind makes business sense and can help cost-effectively meet sustainability goals.

Tom Kiernan, the CEO of AWEA, said: “Wind power’s value to investors, utilities and corporate purchasers is clear: fixed-cost clean energy at competitive prices.

“The high level of wind under construction and in advanced development shows we are on track to deliver 10% of America’s electricity by 2020, along with $85 billion (£64.5bn) in economic activity and 50,000 new jobs.”