March 15 , 2013
Wind now 10% of electricity in nine states, over 20% in Iowa, South Dakota
Impressive numbers from the wind industry’s record-breaking 2012 continued to come out this week with the news that American wind power generation shot up 17 percent last year, producing more than 10 percent of the electricity in nine states, up from the five that hit double digits in 2011.
Those numbers are likely to continue growing as new investments and wind projects are announced, AWEA said. Across the country, wind energy produced 3.5 percent of the nation's electricity during 2012, according to the Energy Information Admiration's (EIA) latest figures.
"With wind power serving as the number one source of new generating capacity in 2012, it's no surprise that wind energy is increasing its role in the overall U.S. power mix," said Elizabeth Salerno, director of industry data & analysis at the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).
The growth in wind energy in the U.S. can also be seen in its increasing role in the generation mix of individual states. Iowa and South Dakota reached generation levels greater than 20 percent throughout the entire year of 2012. In a total of 14 states, American wind energy provides 5 percent or more of generation.
Iowa was ranked first in wind generation, with 24.5 percent generation from wind energy. South Dakota was a close second with 23.9 percent generation from wind energy. North Dakota and Minnesota ranked third and fourth, respectively, both in the 14 percent range. Kansas, which doubled its installation of wind power during 2012, jumped ahead to No. 5 position in wind generation, surpassing the 10 percent mark, reaching 11.4 percent generation from wind energy.
While the top 10 tends to garner the most attention, what’s equally telling is the holder of the spot just beyond the top 10—Texas. Ranked at number 11, the giant state uses the most electricity. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) power grid got 9.2 percent of its electrical generation last year from wind. Not surprisingly when considering the state’s size and wind percent, Texas boasts more wind power than any other state, with more than 12,000 MW installed – over a fifth of the 60,000 MW in the United States at the end of last year.
Here’s a look at the top 10:
1. Iowa, 24.5 percent
2. South Dakota, 23.9 percent
3. North Dakota, 14.7 percent
4. Minnesota, 14.3 percent
5. Kansas, 11.4 percent
6. Colorado, 11.3 percent
7. Idaho, 11.3 percent
8. Oklahoma, 10.5 percent
9. Oregon, 10.0 percent
10. Wyoming, 8.8 percent
Rounding out the top 20 are:
11. Texas, 7.4 percent
12. New Mexico, 6.1 percent
13. Maine, 5.9 percent
14. Washington, 5.8 percent
15. California, 4.9 percent
16. Montana, 4.5 percent
17. Illinois, 3.9 percent
18. Nebraska, 3.7 percent
19. Hawaii, 3.6 percent
20. Indiana, 2.8 percent
"We are generating enough clean, affordable, American wind energy to power the equivalent of almost 15 million homes, or the number in Colorado, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, and Ohio combined," said Salerno.
The geographic diversity and abundance of American wind installations is a reflection of the U.S.’s strong wind resource. In a 2010 study, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory reported that there are over 10 million MW of wind resource in the U.S.—enough to meet the equivalent of the nation's total electricity needs 10 times over. In fact, 25 states have enough wind potential to supply as much electricity as is currently generated from all energy sources in their state.
Overall, the U.S. wind energy industry had its strongest year ever in 2012, installing a record 13,124 MW of electric generating capacity, leveraging $25 billion in private investment, and achieving over 60,000 MW of cumulative wind capacity.
In this historic year of achievement, wind energy for the first time became the number one source of new U.S. electric generating capacity, providing some 42 percent of all new generating capacity. Renewable energy as a whole accounted for over 55 percent of all new U.S. generating capacity in 2012.
Note that the statistics count megawatt-hours generated in a state as going to that state. For a state like California, which may be importing wind, these totals are lower than the total renewable energy used to comply with the state's Renewable Portfolio Standard.
Broadwind Energy wins $35 million tower order
Broadwind Energy, Inc., this week announced a $35 million order from a U.S. wind turbine manufacturer for towers that will go to domestic wind projects.
The towers will be produced in Broadwind’s Manitowoc, Wis., facility for 2013 delivery.
The news follows previous recent orders for 2013 delivery including a $27 million deal announced in February, a $14 million order at the end of November, and one for $37 million in October. The company attributed the latter order to market consolidation prior to the extension of the Production Tax Credit, which came Jan. 1. Since then, the industry has picked up, with its supply-chain factories ramping up to meet increased demand as a result of the near-term policy certainty.
“The level of activity in our wind tower business remains strong and this order moves us one step closer to filing our tower capacity for 2013,”
said President and CEO Peter C. Duprey.
Gamesa U.S. plants supplying turbines for Honduras wind project financed by Ex-Im Bank
Pennsylvania workers will assemble 12 Gamesa wind turbines for export, thanks to a $28.6 million loan to a Honduran power company by the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).
The turbines will go to the Cerro de Hula Wind Farm in Santa Ana, Honduras. The facility, which was first supported by the bank when it was developed in 2010, is being expanded. In 2010 the bank provided long-term financing of 51 2.3-MW U.S.-built turbines for the project. This time around, Gamesa will supply six each of its high-efficiency G-87 and G-97 2.0-MW turbines.
Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal agency that helps to create and maintain U.S. jobs by filling gaps in private export financing at no cost to American taxpayers. The turbine assembly will support 200 U.S. jobs as well as foster the development of clean, renewable energy in Honduras.
Gamesa operates two facilities in the U.S.: a blade plant in Ebensburg, Pa., and a nacelle facility outside Philadelphia. In 2011 Gamesa was named Ex-Im Bank's "Renewable Energy Exporter of the Year."
Also benefitting from the project’s development and build-out are U.S. engineering contractors as well as financial and legal advisors. Those functions will support jobs in Massachusetts, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Texas.
The project developer and borrower, Energía Eólica de Honduras S.A. (EEHSA), will sell the electricity to the Central American nation's utility, Empresa Nacional de Energía Eléctrica. EEHSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of Globeleq Mesoamerica Energy, headquartered in Costa Rica.
"Building on the success of this impressive project, Ex-Im Bank is demonstrating the importance of its role to fill gaps in financing for creditworthy borrowers," said Fred P. Hochberg, chairman and president of Ex-Im Bank. "With this project, we've achieved an impressive win all around: for exporters, for U.S. workers, and for energy consumers in Honduras, because the wind-driven generators cost less to operate than their equivalent in fossil-fueled equipment."
Pattern, Samsung secure financing for South Kent Wind project; construction next
Samsung Renewable Energy, Inc. (Samsung) and Pattern Energy Group LP (Pattern) have secured financing for the 270-MW South Kent Wind project, clearing the way for construction to get underway.
There will be an average of 300 workers on-site throughout project construction and approximately 500 workers during peak construction periods.
The South Kent Wind project will provide renewable energy equal to the needs of approximately 100,000 homes each year, allowing Ontario to continue to move away from its dependence on coal energy. Samsung has earmarked a $7-billion investment in Ontario to build and operate 2,500 MW of wind and solar power, creating what it calls the largest renewable energy cluster in the world.
Vermont businesses totaling over 150 join in support of renewables, opposition to Senate Bill 30
Over 150 Vermont businesses and counting agree that a state bill that would put an across-the-board moratorium on wind project development is bad for the state.
A letter sent to each Vermont Senator reads, "This legislation will hurt local jobs...increase energy costs for homes and businesses, and take Vermont backwards in meeting the goals of our state's Comprehensive Energy Plan."
The bill, which was introduced as a three-year moratorium on wind, has ben expanded to restrict the development of solar, farm methane, and biomass, among other sources.
The letter comes shortly after a poll was released showing strong majority support for wind energy among Vermonters.
Showing their opposition to state Senate Bill 30 are businesses from numerous sectors, starting with suppliers and manufacturers such as NRG Systems and small installers like Solar Pro and Catamount Solar. But as the sheer number of the letter’s signers indicates, the bill has garnered opposition not only from renewables companies. Signing on to oppose the legislation are such companies as Pomerleau Real Estate, Ben and Jerry's, Harrison Concrete, Demag Riggers and Crane, Patagonia and others.
If SB30 is passed, "[I]t hangs a sign on the door of Vermont saying, 'no renewable energy jobs or projects are welcome here,'" as the letter states.
A dozen projects for White Construction in 2012
White Construction, Inc., and its Canadian subsidiary H.B. White Canada Corp. constructed 1,113 MW of renewable energy projects in 2012, the company said.
White, a subsidiary of Infrastructure and Energy Alternatives, LLC, provides engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services for wind and solar energy generating facilities.
White Construction and H.B. White Canada completed the following renewable energy projects in 2012:
- 31.5-MW Amherst Wind Farm for Suzlon / Sprott Power in Nova Scotia, Canada
- 150.4-MW Pioneer Trail Wind Farm for E.ON Climate and Renewables in Illinois
- 99-MW East Lake St. Clair Wind Farm for International Power in Ontario, Canada
- 120-MW Tuscola Bay Wind Farm for Nextera Energy in Michigan
- 100.8-MW Lake Winds Energy Park for Consumer's Energy in Michigan
- 200-MW Wildcat Wind Farm for E-ON Climate and Renewables in Indiana
- 200-MW California Ridge Wind Farm for Invenergy in Illinois
- 60-MW Harvest 2 Wind Farm for Exelon Wind in Michigan
- 40-MW High Mesa Wind Farm for Exelon Wind in Idaho
- 81.6-MW Beebe Wind Farm for Exelon Wind in Michigan
- 9.9-MW Epic Wind Farm for the Morse Group in Wisconsin
- 20-MW Grand Ridge Solar Farm for Invenergy in Illinois
Supply Chain Connections
Two wind industry supply-chain companies made ISO standard-related news this week:
NRG Systems QMS gets ISO certified
Renewable energy measurement specialist NRG Systems said its Quality Management System has been certified to ISO 9001:2008.
The certificate confirms that NRG Systems designs, develops, manufactures, distributes, and provides support for its products following a verified Quality Management System.
NRG Systems said it will continue to improve its Quality Management System in an effort to provide the best possible products for the market.
Capital Safety’s on-site ISO-certified lab to produce efficiencies
Fall protection expert Capital Safety said that it has become the first fall-protection manufacturer to have an ISO 17025-certified lab on-site.
That allows the company to recertify products for customers much more quickly, given that it does not have to deal with any backlogs at off-site accredited labs.
The new ANSI standard for Qualification and Verification Testing went into effect in October. The umbrella standard applies to all products and industries within the ANSI Z359 Fall Protection Code. With the compliance deadline approaching, all retesting must be done by an ISO 17025 Accredited Lab, and the sheer volume of products to be tested has caused a lengthy waiting period, Capital Safety noted.
AWEA business members: Industry road-mapping work scheduled for March 21 in Chicago
As approved in the February Board of Directors meeting, AWEA is launching a strategic planning and road-mapping initiative this year. This effort will engage our business members in charting a new direction for the U.S. wind energy industry for the next 5-10 years. As part of the initial phase of this initiative, we will be conducting a second “Business Roundtable” discussion next week, on Thursday, March 21st, from 2 to 4 p.m. in downtown Chicago.
This discussion will provide valuable member input to help AWEA chart the course of our industry as we begin to develop a new “industry roadmap.” The initiative is a follow-on effort to the May 2008 report on “20% Wind Energy by 2030.” This meeting is open only to AWEA business members. If you would like to attend, please send a confirmation to BusinessDevelopment@awea.org. You will receive further details when you confirm.
An industry must: Be at WINDPOWER. Membership lapsed? A special WINDPOWER offer for you
The WINDPOWER 2013 Conference & Exhibition, the industry’s premier annual industry event, will take place May 5-8 at the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, Ill., and AWEA would like to welcome former members with a limited time special offer.
Meanwhile, for all industry members: Find your solutions for success on the show floor.
Everything WINDPOWER 2013 at www.windpower.expo.org.
WINDPOWER includes utility track
* Special 50 percent discount offered to utilities *
If you’re a utility, you need to know more about wind power. If you’re not, that means that ultimately, somewhere down the line of the wind industry, the utility is your main customer.
Utility sessions explore issues, suggested by utility professionals, and offer a variety of perspectives for utilities engaging in wind energy. The following interactive sessions comprise the main Utility Track:
Session 1: Utility Ownership, Operations & Maintenance of Wind Projects in the Midwest
Utility speakers describe the growing trend of utilities owning, operating, and maintaining wind turbine projects. They share lessons learned and practical experiences. An O&M service provider speaks to working with utilities Learn what is driving utilities to own their own wind projects, and their challenges and successes. An extended Q&A session follows
Session 2: Critical Topics and Near—Term Issues Facing Utilities on Wind Power Growth (Tues, May 7, 2:45 – 4:15 p.m.)
Explore new and emerging topics that utilities face as growth continues in the Midwest. U.S. industry experts dive into four areas and then engage in an interactive, audience-participation discussion.
Join us in Chicago, May 5–8, for WINDPOWER 2013. It’s a unique opportunity to be a part of the activity in the electricity market as it develops. The time is ripe to strike wind power deals. As a utility, if you’re not in Chicago in May, you and your customers may miss out on the chance to benefit from this unique development period. As for the rest of the industry: utilities are your end customer, so learn more about them, and interact with them at WINDPOWER.
To register or learn more about utility events and education sessions, go to http://windpowerexpo.org/utility.
Utility special: Utilities receive 50 percent off on the Main Conference Pass. Utilities, use code WP13UT when registering.
Special Industry News
Join us at EnergyBiz Leadership Forum
March 18–19, 2013 | Washington, D.C. | National Press Club
Participate in the discussion and understand how utility leaders are coping with policy shifts, global innovations, cyber security and an all-around radically new utility universe. With rapid and radical changes before us, don't wait. Space is limited. Register today. www.EnergyBizForum.com.
Volume 29, Issue 1524
|Wind Energy Weekly is a publication of the American Wind Energy Association and a service to its Members.
Interim Chief Executive Officer
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Distributed & Community Wind
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