Wind energy leaders in most categories held onto their No. 1 positions in the latest version of the American Wind Energy Association's (AWEA) annual rankings of wind power leadership in the U.S.
The new listings, based on numbers compiled at the end of 2007, closely resemble those from the previous year, with Texas leading states in both total and new wind power, FPL Energy operating the nation's largest wind farms, GE Energy capturing the largest U.S. market share for wind turbines, and Xcel Energy claiming more wind on its system than any other investor-owned utility.
‘As a clean, domestic renewable energy source, wind power is a key part of the solution to many of the most serious economic, environmental and energy security problems our country faces,’ says Randall Swisher, AWEA's executive director. ‘The numbers in this year's rankings also underscore the wind energy industry's strong growth and the fact that wind is a bright spot in the U.S. economy.’
A broadening of categories this year did reveal some new front-runners. Iowa leads the nation in wind generation on a percentage basis, obtaining 5.5% of its electricity from the renewable energy source, while Great River Energy and CPS Energy led the pack among rural electric cooperatives and municipal utilities, respectively. Turbines built by manufacturer Vestas, meanwhile, are the largest installed in the U.S.