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AWEA Windpower 2014 Las Vegas

UNITED STATES: The American wind industry is descending on Las Vegas for its annual conference Windpower 2014.

The hotels of Las Vegas are filling up with delegates from the wind energy industry, as they gather for the annual event. The opening session on Tuesday morning, entitled State of the Wind Energy Industry. Speakers include: Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA; Robert Thresher from US research centre NREL; and James Dehlsen, cofounder of Clipper and adviser to the DOE, now with marine renewables firm Ecomerit Technologies.

This year's conference and exhibition is themed Transformation in Motion, focusing on the technological advances being worked on in the US wind industry, and the 13GW of wind projects that is currently under construction.

Before the public start of the event, AWEA voted in Susan Reily, CEO of RES Americas as new AWEA board chair and Mike Garland, CEO of Pattern Energy as chair elect.

The event is being held in one of the glitzy hotels on the famous Las Vegas Strip, not a location with an obvious connection with energy efficiency. Yet, the hotel in which the event is being held, Mandalay Bay, is installing solar panels onto the rooftop that when finished should power up to 20% of the resort, and it has replaced over 255,000 light bulbs with energy efficient fluorescent LED ones, including in almost 300 slot machines. Exhibitors are also being encouraged to sign up to an AWEA efficiency challenge.

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