Unprecedented wind power growth in 2014 -- let's keep it going! Print
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Aaron Severn   
Wednesday, 05 February 2014 14:14

Here at the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), we recently released some exciting news – that the U.S. has more wind projects under construction right now than ever before.

Here are some more highlights from our
Fourth Quarter 2013 Market Report

  • There is enough wind power under construction in the U.S. to power the equivalent of 3.5 million American homes, or all of the households in Iowa, Oklahoma and Kansas – that’s over 12,000 megawatts (MW) in total.
  • Some of the states poised for major growth in wind energy include Texas, Iowa, Kansas, North Dakota, and Michigan.
  • U.S. manufacturing production capacity has ramped up dramatically, with major manufacturing facilities active in Colorado, Kansas, Iowa and South Dakota.

In contrast, however, the amount of wind power installed in the U.S. this past year is the smallest the country has seen in the past nine years – only 1,084 MW, a 92% drop from 2012.

The reason for this contrast is the lack of certainty about federal policy, particularly the renewable energy production tax credit (PTC) and investment tax credit (ITC) that help project developers finance wind projects.

Throughout 2012, the wind industry did not know if the tax credits would be extended, so business came to a halt – thus resulting in the small amount of new wind power installed last year.

When the PTC was extended at the beginning of 2013, the industry quickly rebounded, signing a record number of agreements to sell wind power, and starting construction on projects in at least 20 states.

We are once again without policy certainty.  Congress did not act on tax legislation in 2013, and so the PTC was allowed to expire for the fifth time in its history on January 1, 2014.

I urge you to write to your federal legislators today.  Show them both the disappointing year that the wind industry had in 2013, and the exciting year that is coming up in 2014.  Ask them to support extensions of the PTC and ITC, so that businesses in the wind industry can have the certainty they need to develop clean, homegrown, affordable power.