Wind Industry Says It Grew Energy Capacity By 2.4 Million Homes

The times they are a changing, and the answer is blowing in the wind. That’s perhaps how Bob Dylan would paraphrase the Year End 2009 Market Report of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), which reports that the U.S. wind industry broke all previous records in 2009 by by installing nearly 10,000 megawatts (MW) of new generating capacity, enough to serve over 2.4 million homes.

Early last year, apparently, the industry was worried that 2009 might see as much as a 50% drop from 2008 wind development levels, with equivalent job losses. But then came Obama’s Recovery Act, which spurred the growth of construction, operations and maintenance, and management jobs in wind development. In 2009, new wind projects kept pace with natural gas as a leading source of new electricity generation for the country, together accounting for 80% of new capacity.

image via American Wind Energy Association

However, not all the news is bright and happy for wind, as the report also notes that U.S. wind turbine manufacturing is down compared to last year’s levels, which does not bode well for new projects in the near future. In a statement, AWEA CEO Denise Bode calls for a national Renewable Electricity Standard (RES) to provide stability for manufacturers looking to expand their U.S. operations and build up the renewable energy industry. The entire report is available for  download (as a .pdf.)

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.

    • arnoldkn

      Great…now our Energy industry grow day by day.i hope that in future we will see some more jobs in Energy industry.

    • As long as we continue to insufficiently set renewable standards in this country, we will continue to lose these “green jobs” to other countries who have put a more aggressive stance towards renewable energy development. Although the U.S. is currently the leader in wind power, China and other Asian markets are poising themselves as taking the lead. We need to develop and energy policy that secures jobs and energy security for America.
      Want to learn more about balanced energy for America? Visit http://www.consumerenergyalliance.org to get involved, discover CEA’s mission and sign up for our informative newsletter.