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The US wind energy industry installed 1,210MW of new power generating capacity in the second quarter, bringing the total added this year to just over 4,000MW, by comparison with the 2,900MW added in the first six months of 2008, according to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) in its second quarter (Q2) market report.
While the number of completed wind farm installations was solid, AWEA said it is seeing a reduced number of orders and a lower level of activity in manufacturing of wind turbines and their components. The AWEA described this development as ‘troubling’ in view of the fact that the US industry was previously on track for much larger growth, and the global wind power industry is continuing to expand. Three wind turbine and turbine component manufacturing facilities were opened, four facilities were expanding, and eight facilities were announced during the past quarter. This brings the total of opened, expanding and announced facilities up to 20 since the beginning of the year. At the same time, many existing supply chain companies have stopped hiring or have furloughed employees due to the slowdown in contracts for wind turbines. Wind turbine component manufacturing investment was one of the bright spots in the economy in 2008, with over 55 facilities added, expanded or announced.
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