Dave's Energy

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Wind Energy - Annual Industry Rankings

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) just released their annual rankings for the wind energy industry in America. Some interesting points:
  • California still has the most capacity installed, but Texas has made serious gains from last year and is expected to overtake California this year; this makes sense, because Texas has the second-most wind energy potential behind North Dakota.
  • Xcel Energy, which operatates in Minnesota, Colorado, and Texas, has replaced SoCal Edison as the top buyer of wind power. SoCal Edison has sat atop this perch for many years but with the surge in Texas, Xcel has been buying away, with plans to greatly increase their wind energy consumption in Colorado as well as Texas in the following year.
  • This chart displays the installed wind power capacity in the US:
    (Chart removed for space considerations)


  • I like this article...it allows us to do some simple math to figure out a few interesting points.

    First, note the comment about a 1.5 MW turbine being able to produce about 4 million kWh of electricity. Divide these 2 numbers and you get 2,667 hours. That gives us an effective utilization of 2666hrs divided 8760hrs/yr = 30%. Not bad.

    So if we take the total wind capacity of a state, and divide by 30%, and again by 8760 hrs in a year, we get an approximation for the total potential MW of installed capacity.

    I ran the numbers for Texas...looks like they haven't even hit 1% of their total potential.

    By Blogger David Horning, at 9:50 PM  

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