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Made in America: The Case for Wind Energy

18 Aug 2012  |   Soham Pandit

Tags: General Environment

A new report from the U.S. Department of Energy and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory examines the state of the wind energy market, arguing that 'Wind is a credible source of new generation in the United States,' having experienced dramatic growth in recent years.

The report's findings highlight the U.S. wind industry as one of the largest and fastest growing wind markets in the world. American wind power now represents a remarkable 32 percent of all new electric capacity additions nationwide, accounts for $14 billion in new investment, and can generate enough electricity to power 13 million homes annually.

The industry's robust expansion has also strengthened the U.S. manufacturing sector, with nearly 70 percent of wind equipment - including wind turbines, towers, blades, gears, and generators - now being made in America, doubling from 35 percent in 2005 as more manufacturing jobs shift back from overseas. Domestic clean energy production and manufacturing competitiveness are working hand-in-hand to add tens of thousands of American jobs to an industry that already employs 75,000 workers across over 400 manufacturing facilites in 43 states throughout the country. At the current pace, the wind industry workforce is projected to expand to almost 100,000 American jobs in just four years, and stay on track toward supporting 500,000 American jobs by 2030.

“This report shows that America can lead the world in the global race to manufacture and deploy clean energy technologies,” said Energy Secretary Steven Chu.  “The wind industry employs tens of thousands of American workers and has played a key role in helping to more than double wind power over the last four years. To ensure that this industry continues to stay competitive, President Obama has called on Congress to extend the successful clean energy tax credits, which are benefitting businesses and manufacturers nationwide.”

This infographic details key findings from the 2011 Wind Market Report. | Infographic by Sarah Gerrity, Department of Energy

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