Wind power accounted for a third of all new electricity generation capacity added in the U.S. last year, the American Wind Energy Association said Thursday. The industry group’s annual report said 6,816 megawatts were added, boosting installed capacity 31 percent to 46,916 megawatts. Texas remained the No. 1 state in wind power, with 10,300 megawatts installed, AWEA said. Iowa was No. 2, with 4,300 megawatts, and California No. 3 with 3,900.
AWEA said Texas had 857 megawatts under construction at the start of 2012, second only to Kansas’ 1,189 megawatts. The group also estimated that Texas has between 6,000 and 7,000 jobs in wind power.Most of the state’s wind capacity in West Texas, but the Gulf Coast is also gaining installations. About 3 percent of U.S. power came from wind last year, a figure AWEA said the industry aims to grow to 20 percent by 2030. South Dakota led in terms of total electricity produced at 22.3 percent, followed by Iowa at 18.8 percent. Wind power last year produced 6.9 percent of all Texas electricity, and 8.5 percent of power on the grid operated by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which serves North Texas.
Is a policy analyst consultant for TCAP, a coalition of political subdivisions in Texas that purchase electricity in the deregulated market for their own governmental use. Because energy costs are typically a significant budget item to our members, TCAP is consistently looking for ways to save our members money, through cost-saving contracts, energy efficiency or demand response programs.