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Shares of major wind turbine manufacturers slumped on European markets on Wednesday as the U.S. presidential election—with the two candidates differing strongly on energy policy—continued to be too close to call as of 10 a.m. ET.
The biggest manufacturers of wind turbines have a strong presence on the U.S. wind market, which has been rapidly growing in recent years.
U.S. President Donald Trump’s energy agenda continues to be pro-oil and favoring the fossil fuel industries, while Democratic candidate Joe Biden has an energy plan that would strongly favor renewable power development, including wind energy.
On Wednesday afternoon central European time, shares of turbine manufacturer Vestas were down nearly 3 percent in Copenhagen, while Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy was down by 2.4 percent in Madrid.
Vestas has more than 23.5 gigawatts (GW) installed in the United States, over 24 GW under service, and approximately 6,000 employees. Vestas US is the number one wind turbine company in the U.S., while its Vestas Tower Factory in Pueblo, Colorado, is the largest in the world, the firm says.
Siemens Gamesa, for its part, considers the U.S. a key market, and has 22 GW installed across 34 states, providing enough energy for over 6.5 million average U.S. homes. In Texas alone, Siemens Gamesa’s total installed capacity will soon be close to 6 GW after the company won in September a 325-MW onshore wind project.
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Offshore wind also has a lot of potential to become a major industry in the United States, and a Biden Administration will likely accelerate such development.
Smoother processes of leasing and permitting of offshore wind projects could facilitate up to US$166 billion in offshore wind investment in the United States by 2035, Wood Mackenzie said in recent research commissioned by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), the National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA), the New York Offshore Wind Alliance, and the University of Delaware’s Special Initiative on Offshore Wind.
The U.S. wind industry installed nearly 2 GW of new wind power capacity in the third quarter of 2020, setting a record for third-quarter additions and bringing total American capacity to nearly 112 GW, AWEA said in its latest report last week.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com