US wind industry sees big growth in 2015, set for another big year in 2016

According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), national wind power installations grew significantly between 2014 and 2015, with 5,001 MW of wind power installed in the fourth quarter of 2015 alone. Growth is set to continue this year with 9,400 MW already under construction at the start of 2016.

This growth isn’t being driven by utilities alone. 75% of wind power purchase agreements Q4 of 2015 were signed by non-utility groups including Fortune 500 companies, municipalities, and universities. “The U.S. wind industry hasn’t seen this kind of rapid growth for years,” said John Hensley, Manager, Industry Data & Analysis, for AWEA.

As it becomes increasingly cost-competitive, government and private groups alike are looking towards wind power to provide emissions-free electricity. “Low-cost, stably-priced wind energy is a ‘no-regrets’ solution for states and utilities looking for the best way to meet the Clean Power Plan,” said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA. “Texas ranchers and Iowa farmers know wind power costs one-third as much as it did six years ago.”

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