Clean Power

Published on February 5th, 2013 | by Zachary Shahan


First Wind Projects 50% Portfolio Growth In Coming Years

February 5th, 2013 by  

First Wind, which is focused on the development, financing, construction, ownership, and operation of utility-scale renewable energy projects in the United States (primarily wind power projects), is one of the top wind power companies that will benefit from the recent decision of the U.S. Congress to keep supporting this nascent but fast-growing energy sector. Following the decision to extend the wind power production tax credit (PTC), First Wind announced that it now “hopes to increase its operating portfolio of wind projects by 50 percent or more.”

“The ambitious effort could mean that thousands of people will be employed building new First Wind projects over the next few years along with millions of dollars in investment and new revenue generated for host communities and others, while delivering cost-competitive clean energy to more homes across the country,” First Wind adds.

The company currently operates 980 megawatts (MW) of wind projects in 6 U.S. states.

I’m sure this is just one of many stories about the benefits of extending the wind power PTC, and I’m sure the PTC is still creating a net benefit for the American public. Furthermore, as we’ve noted plenty of times before, historical subsidies for wind power don’t compare to historical subsidies for competing energy industries (all of which continue to receive subsidies even though many of those subsidies no longer benefit society, but actually harms it). So, I think the wind industry very well deserves this support, and we should all make it very clear to our friends and relatives that this simple wind power subsidy is creating jobs and benefiting our economy!

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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) with the power of the typed word. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor, but he's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession, Solar Love, and Bikocity. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, and energy storage expert. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in.

  • G. Woods

    So why did First Wind CEO Paul Gaynor argue AGAINST the extension of the PTC? See:
    In Maine, their average actually output (per FERC reports) is only 23% of capacity despite their promises of 38%. They are at the forefront of the windscam.

    • Bob_Wallace

      The wind industry has stated that they need only a few more years of public support before they will be able to go it on their own.

      The AWEA called for continued support at the 2012 level for 2013 and 2014. After that the level of support would be reduced per year until it disappeared in 2018.

      Wind is decreasing in cost. The needed infrastructure (turbine factories, supply chains, trained/skilled workers) is coming together so that wind will soon become our cheapest new way to produce electricity. It’s roughly tied with natural gas for the lowest spot right now.

      Do you have a link for your FERC number?

    • Bob_Wallace

      Gee, G. Seems like you/your source reported Gaynor’s statement differently than what he said…

      Here’s the quote…

      “‘I think it would be great if we could come to a conference and not talk about being subsidized by the federal government,’ he told the Renewable Energy Finance Forum-Wall Street event here this week.

      “‘I know the industry has needed it. I think the question for all of us is, ‘Do we need it anymore or forever? I believe the answer is no,’’ he says. ‘We shouldn’t need it.’”

      “Gaynor says without the PTC, the wind industry would eliminate all Washington politics around extending the subsidy every year or two. It could also differentiate itself from other renewable energy sectors by being able to stand up on its own two feet, he adds.”

      Everyone who is surprised that an anti-renewable energy group would misrepresent the truth, raise your hand.

      Seeing no hands raised….

  • Otis11

    Awesome news! Sadly their a small company so it won’t make a large impact on the overall grid, but every bit helps! And more than that – it shows how successful such ventures can be!

    “deserves these this support” => “deserves this support”

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