A report titled the U.S. Wind Industry Fourth Quarter 2017 Market Report, published on February 7 found that a whopping 7,017 MW (megawatts) of new wind power was delivered in 2017. It amounted to US$11 billion in private investment. In the fourth quarter, 29 new wind farms totaling 4,125 MW started production in the fourth quarter across 16 states.
The report projects the wind industry to grow to continue growing in 2018 and in the next couple of years as well and in the process create jobs in rural areas. It would also lead to the growth in factory towns. In this manner wind power can prove to be helpful for the economy.
Increase in Wind Farms Ups Capacity
Besides, there is also an increase in the number of wind farms being constructed. In all about 28,668 MW is expected to be generated in the near term, states the report.
Texas emerged as the leader in adoption of wind energy in the U.S. with 1,179 MW installed. It is trailed by Oklahoma which had installed 851 MW, Iowa which had installed 334 MW, Illinois with 306 MW, and finally with Missouri 300 MW.
New long-term contracts in the domain through power purchase agreements (PPAs) came to around 710 MW in the fourth quarter in 2017.
Chief executive officer of AWEA (acronym for American Wind Energy Association) added that wind had a considerable positive impact on the U.S. economy in 2017. Building new wind farms provides employment opportunities to factory and construction workers, besides breathing new life into ranching and farming communities.