Strong Growth from 2009 to 2016 and Projections to 2025
During President Obama’s State of the Union address on January 12, 2016, he stated, “Seven years ago, we made the single biggest investment in clean energy in our history.” He went on, “Here are the results. In fields from Iowa to Texas, wind power is now cheaper than dirtier, conventional power.”
It’s true. American wind power has more than tripled in size and costs one-third as much as it did than when the president took office in 2009. By consistently making your voices heard, U.S. wind energy is stronger now than it’s ever been.
Wind is powering nearly 5% of our country’s electricity today, and AWEA’s goal is to double that number in the next four years.
At the start of 2016, Tom Kiernan, CEO of American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) listed the top five things Americans should know about wind power, in his blog.
- With over 70 gigawatts (GW) of installed capacity, there’s more than three times as much wind power in the U.S. as there was in 2009. To put that into context, that’s enough energy to power 19 million American homes with low-cost electricity each year.
- Wind is also 66% less expensive than it was when President Obama took office. This cost-cutting was possible because of technological advancements spurred by American ingenuity and improvements in domestic manufacturing.
- Building U.S. wind farms has built a brand new domestic manufacturing supply chain in the U.S., spurring well-paying jobs in all 50 states. That includes over 500 factories in 43 states building wind turbine parts and supplies. The U.S. Department of Labor recently identified wind turbine technician jobs as the fastest growing occupation in the country, while the Department of Energy’s Wind Vision report says wind could support 380,000 jobs by 2030.
- Wind energy is the biggest, fastest, cheapest way for states to cut carbon pollution and comply with the Clean Power Plan. It already eliminates carbon emissions from the equivalent of 26 million cars. The Energy Information Administration found that wind could generate 57% of the new energy needed to comply with the plan under the lowest-cost scenario.
- New customers are helping fuel wind’s growth. Major companies and entire cities are recognizing that wind power helps them save money while also achieving their sustainability goals. Google, Amazon and Procter & Gamble all recently made large wind energy purchases, while cities from San Diego to Washington, D.C. are increasing their share of renewable energy. They appreciate the protection from price spikes in the cost of conventional fuels.