Tuesday, February 28, 2012

US Wind Energy Market Review and Forecasts for 2012

After decreasing by almost 50 percent in 2010 the US wind installations began to show signs of recovery in 2011. Wind farms have proliferated across the United States over the past decade, they now generate 3 percent of the nation's electricity. Wind power has installed 35 percent of all new American electric generation in the last five years. Wind energy is also one of the fastest growing new sources of US manufacturing jobs. American wind power accounts for 75,000 jobs today, and can grow to almost 100,000 jobs four years from now and according to a Bush Administration study, wind can support 500,000 American jobs less than 20 years from now. The U.S. now has over 400 manufacturing facilities in 43 states involved in wind turbine manufacturing. This represents a 12-fold growth in domestic manufacturing over the last six years.

Globally 2011 was a good year for wind installations in China, India and Canada and even Europe. Led by Brazil and Mexico, we are starting to see major growth in Latin America. The US market, although not up to the 10 GW installed in 2009, will be well ahead of 2010’s 5 GW market.

Increasing fossil fuel prices mean that as far as cost efficiency is concerned the wind power could achieve parity by 2016. The best wind farms in the world already produce power as economically as coal, gas and nuclear generators.

More than 7 GW of wind capacity is expected to be installed in the US in 2012, a 25% increase on 2011. The growth in wind is fueled by the proximate expiration of the Loan Guarantee programme, the production tax credit (PTC) and the investment tax credit (ITC), the main drivers for the wind market.

As developers of wind energy rush to complete projects before the expiration of the PTCs at the end of this year, the market will experience an acceleration of installations, especially during Q1 and Q2 of 2012. If the PTCs are not extended, a major halt throughout the entire US wind industry can be anticipated in the second half of 2012.

© 2012, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

Related Posts
Renewable Energy in 2012: The Global Economic and Environmental Climate
Renewable Energy Is Our Only Hope
How the West can Capitalize on the Growth of Chinese Cleantech in 2012
Outlook for the Chinese Solar Industry in 2012
India is the World Leader in Cleantech Investment Growth
The EU Debt Crisis did Not Curb the Growth of Renewables in 2011
UK Renewable Energy 2011 Overview
UK Wind Energy
Cuts to UK Solar FiTs Could Prove Deadly
Cuts to UK Wind Power ROCs & FiTs
The Implications of the Expiration of US Renewable Energy Subsidies
Obama 2013 Budget Seeks to Make Renewable Tax Credits Permanent
US Solar Energy Review and 2012 Forecasts
Geothermal Energy Market Review and Forecasts for 2012
Private Sector Green Investment
Cleantech the Next Great Investment Opportunity
Will 2012 be the Best Year Ever For Clean-Tech Investment?
Investments from Corporate Sustainability is Driving Green Businesses in the UK
UK Government Investments in Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Growing US Corporate Investments are Driving Cleantech
Greener Vehicles Growing Cleantech and Providing Green Jobs
Cleantech Partnerships and Collaborations
California and Other US Leaders in Cleantech Investments
Leading US Cleantech Investment Sectors in 2011 Q3 and Q4
VC Investment in US Cleantech in 2011
US Regains Lead from China as Clean Energy Leader
Investing in CleanTech: Efficiency Upgrades and Renewable Energy


Dan said...

Those are some great numbers on wind turbine blade manufacturing jobs. From this data, it looks like creating additional wind turbines is great for our energy issues and for creating domestic jobs.

Market Analysis said...

Your blog is one good source of market information as well as helpful for my energy market research and development.