The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) announced at the annual National Clean Energy Summit that the US now has more than 50GW of installed wind capacity. That is enough to provide electricity to 13 million homes, the equivalent of Nevada, Colorado, Wisconsin, Virginia, Alabama, and Connecticut combined.
US wind capacity has doubled since 2008, and this year promises to see the largest amount of installations ever, with over 2.8 GW already added. The surge in new wind capacity this year is mostly due to the fact that developers want to complete projects before the governments production tax credit (PTC) runs out at the end of the year.
Mitt Romney has increased concern over the future of the vital PTC by claiming that if he is elected president in November, he will not extend the PTC into the next year.
Denise Bode, the AWEA chief executive, admitted that “these truly are the best of times and could be the worst of times for American wind power. This month we shattered the 50-gigawatt mark, and we're on pace for one of our best years ever in terms of megawatts installed. But because of the uncertainty surrounding the extension of the Production Tax Credit, incoming orders are grinding to a halt.”
“Layoffs have begun up and down our American manufacturing supply chain, which the industry has so proudly built up in support of the US economy and made-in-the USA manufacturing. Congress must act now to give wind energy a stable business environment to keep producing all this homegrown power, and save 37,000 American jobs by the first quarter of next year.”
By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com
Joao is a writer for Oilprice.com