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Clean Power US Wind Energy

Published on March 6th, 2014 | by AWEA

3

Wind Power Provided 30% Of All New Electricity Generation Capacity In Past 5 Years

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March 6th, 2014 by  

US Wind Energy

Chart Source: AWEA; Data Source: EIA Electric Power Monthly

American wind power topped 4% of the US power grid for the first time last year and has delivered 30% of all new generating capacity for the last five years. In Iowa and South Dakota, wind power now exceeds 25% of total electricity production. In nine states, it provided more than 12%, and in 17 states, more than 5%.

Wind power generated 4.13% of all the electricity in America in 2013 as the fifth-largest electricity source in the US, according to the latest data from the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA). That is enough to power the equivalent of 15.5 million American homes, which is equivalent of all the residential households in Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Nebraska, Nevada, and Ohio combined.

“Wind energy continues to make inroads as a major contributor to the US power mix,” said Elizabeth Salerno, Vice President of Industry Data and Analysis for the American Wind Energy Association. “The electricity generated by American wind power has more than tripled since 2008 not only due to significant growth in new wind projects but also technology innovation leading to more productive wind turbines.” All renewable energy sources now deliver nearly 13% of the nation’s electricity.

Texas, the state with the largest electricity load and the most installed wind capacity, also generated the most electricity from wind energy – over 35.9 million megawatt-hours, or enough to power 3.3 million homes. ERCOT, the main electric grid in Texas, received 9.9% of its electrical generation from wind energy during 2013 and is on track to top 10% in the coming years considering the 7,000 MW of new capacity now under construction in Texas.

The top states for installed wind capacity all set records in 2013 for the amount of electricity generated. Texas, Iowa, California, and Oklahoma each generated enough electricity to power more than 1 million American homes.

The geographic diversity and abundance of American wind installations is a reflection of the United States’ strong wind resource. In a 2010 study, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory reported over 10 million MW of wind resource in the US, enough to power the equivalent of the nation’s total electricity needs 10 times over.

The wind energy industry started 2014 with a record 12,000 MW of wind project capacity under construction and will deliver even more clean and affordable energy to our nation’s electricity generation portfolio.

Access more information on wind generation data and state-level wind energy statistics.


Table 1:
Wind Energy Share of State’s Generation

Table 2:
Wind Energy Generation by State (in thousand MWh)
 

Rank State

% Wind Generation in 2013

1 Iowa

27.4%

2 South Dakota

26.0%

3 Kansas

19.4%

4 Idaho

16.2%

5 Minnesota

15.7%

6 North Dakota

15.6%

7 Oklahoma

14.8%

8 Colorado

13.8%

9 Oregon

12.4%

10 Wyoming

8.4%

11 Texas

8.3%

12 Maine

7.4%

13 California

6.6%

14 Washington

6.2%

15 New Mexico

6.1%

16 Montana

6.0%

17 Hawaii

5.1%

18 Nebraska

4.8%

19 Illinois

4.7%

20 Vermont

3.4%

 

 

Rank State

Wind Generation in 2013

Equivalent Homes Powered

1 Texas

35,937

3,315,000

2 Iowa

15,571

1,430,000

3 California

13,230

1,220,000

4 Oklahoma

10,881

1,045,000

5 Illinois

9,607

880,000

6 Kansas

9,430

870,000

7 Minnesota

8,065

744,000

8 Oregon

7,452

687,000

9 Colorado

7,382

681,000

10 Washington

7,008

646,000

 

Note: These statistics from the Energy Information Administration represent generation produced within each state. This means that states that are importing wind, like California, may have lower totals than those used to comply with the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS).

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About the Author

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) is the voice of wind energy in the U.S., promoting renewable energy to power a cleaner, stronger America. Keep up with all the latest wind industry news at: http://www.aweablog.org/blog/



  • climatehawk3

    Some political theorist optimistically characterized the US federal system allowing there to be 50 different labs for governmental policy.this map would seem to indicate that magically from all four directions wind disappears as soon as it crosses into nebraska.do those living in nebraska ever travel to the surrounding states?can anyone explain?

    • Bob_Wallace

      Nebraska lost the key to their lab.

    • Peter Gray

      Nice observation! There’s an even steeper drop-off as you go from CA and OR to NV and AZ. Or from OK/TX to AR/LA, but that could be due to weak winds all over the Southeast. Compare to the resource map here (http://www.windpoweringamerica.gov/wind_maps.asp), and you’re certainly right about Nebraska! As Jon Stewart suggested a couple weeks ago, some states function as “the meth labs of democracy.”

      It would be interesting to see the states mapped in terms of percent harvested of theoretically available wind resource.

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