WIND ENERGY GROWTH IN THE UNITED STATES
STARTING SMALL, BUT THINKING BIG: WIND POWER IN AMERICA CONTINUES TO GROW
In 1983 renewable energy became a priority in Iowa when the state made history with its renewable-energy mandate, which required local utilities to use wind or solar power generation resources. It was the first U.S. state to push for wind power in America, and now GE is helping to keep the wind power tradition in Iowa going. With a plan to erect 190 turbines in collaboration with Iowa’s Alliant Energy, GE Renewable Energy will grow the state’s wind power by an additional 470 MW.
This project turns another page in the history books—GE Renewable Energy’s American wind capacity has now gone over 40 GW— and can power the equivalent of 11 million homes. The increase in wind power can be attributed to advances in wind power technology. Not only are these turbines more plentiful, but quality has improved along with quantity.
Engineers and researchers are working on harnessing the power of the wind even when it isn’t blowing, to increase the efficiency of wind power generation. With the rise of hybrid storage, wind power is becoming more versatile than ever. Solutions like batteries and hydro pumped storage can work in tandem with wind turbines, giving power generators more options, while still contributing wind power energy to the national grid.
It’s all part of a larger trend: over the past ten years, wind power has grown to be the largest source of renewable energy in the U.S.—nearly tripling, according to the American Wind Energy Association. It’s not just Iowa embracing wind power anymore.
Read the full story on GE Reports.