The US Energy Department (DOE) has released three wind market reports demonstrating continued growth in wind energy nationwide. America’s wind industry added more than 8,200MW of capacity last year, representing 27 per cent of all energy capacity additions in 2016. In 2016, wind supplied about 6 per cent of US electricity, and 14 states now get more than 10 per cent of their electricity from wind. The reports cover the following market sectors: land-based utility scale, offshore, and distributed wind.
Utility-scale wind installations stand at more than 82GW, enough to meet about 6.2 percent of U.S. end-use electricity demand in an average year. The 2016 Wind Technologies Market Report shows the impact of growing the American workforce, currently supporting 101,738 jobs related to project development, siting, turbine manufacturing, transportation, and other sectors—an increase of 32 percent from 2015.
The U.S. offshore wind project development pipeline includes over 20 projects totalling 24,135MW of potential installed capacity. Most of the near-term activity is concentrated in the Atlantic off the Northeast coast, but projects have been proposed in the Southeast Atlantic, the Pacific, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Great Lakes. Of the US projects in deeper waters, where traditional bottom-mounted technologies are not feasible, proposed floating offshore wind projects now total 1,993 MW of announced capacity.
In total, U.S. wind turbines in distributed applications reached a cumulative installed capacity of 992MW. This capacity comes from roughly 77,000 turbines installed across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. US manufacturers continued to dominate domestic sales of small wind turbines (up through 100 kilowatts), and half of U.S. small wind turbine manufacturers also export their products to other countries. Between 2014 and 2016, U.S.-based small wind turbine manufacturers accounted for more than US$ 240 million in small wind turbine export sales.