United States

Windpower Monthly rating 4/5

Our rating is based on a combination of project pipeline, political and policy support, investor confidence and structural readiness of the country in terms of grid infrastructure, permitting process and local supply chain.

Forecast of installed and operating wind power capacity based on the latest statisitics and measured against the Windpower Intelligence database.

The United States is enjoying a relatively prolonged period of policy certainty following the 2016 decision to phase out its key incentive, the Production Tax Credit, over five years.

For almost two decades, the regular one- or two-year extensions, often as the incentive was about to expire, created a boom-and-bust cycle confusing developers and scaring off investors.

Some uncertainty remains post the 2021-end of the tax incentive, but the industry is confident it can operate at market prices by that time, with the rise of corporate power purchase deals becoming an important driver.

Much policy is directed at state level, with some states such as Texas and Iowa more friendly towards wind projects.

Transmission becoming a bigger issue, as the country starts needing to ship the vast amounts of generation in central and mid-west states to load centres of coastal cities. 

This offers an opportunity to offshore wind, which can be placed closer to major cities. Still in its infancy, the US could have over 12GW of offshore wind capacity in the first half of the next decade. 

United States In-Depth

The Wright way

The Wright way

UNITED STATES: Having joined the company as an intern, MidAmerican CEO Adam Wright combines in-depth experience of the business with the competitiveness of a former professional NFL player as the utility works to deliver on its 100% renewable energy promise.

OPINION: US coal, nuclear subsidy plans go against the grain

OPINION: US coal, nuclear subsidy plans go against the grain

The latest move by the US administration to prop up coal and nuclear capacity is at odds with the momentum of the industry, as well as with Trump rhetoric.

WindEconomics: Database reveals long life of US turbines

WindEconomics: Database reveals long life of US turbines

UNITED STATES: A recently released database of American wind turbines provides evidence that lifetimes of 20 years or more can easily be realised, with the oldest machines having been commissioned 37 years ago in 1981.

Cape Wind: Requiem for a dream

Cape Wind: Requiem for a dream

UNITED STATES: Cape Wind was the big, ambitious project that aimed to kickstart offshore wind development in the US, but which foundered in the face of powerful opposition groups. Where did it all go wrong and what others can learn from the developer's experience?

US offshore risks falling further behind Europe

Offshore wind in the United States is an abundant domestic energy resource located close to major coastal load centres and areas plagued with transmission congestion.

Latest United States news

GE launches 5.3MW onshore turbine

HAMBURG 2018: GE Renewable Energy has launched a new 5.3MW onshore turbine model with a 158-metre rotor.

US firms unveil new jacket design

UNITED STATES: US construction firms Chet Morrison and iSIMS have unveiled a new jacket foundation design that uses less steel than the traditional substructure.

Xcel completes 600MW Colorado project

UNITED STATES: Xcel Energy has completed construction of its two-phase 600MW Rush Creek project in Colorado.

RES America cancels 600MW plans in Indiana

UNITED STATES: RES Americas has abandoned plans for a 600MW wind farm in Indiana, citing "unfavourable" changes in "technical circumstances".

Virginia could be offshore investment 'tipping point'

UNITED STATES: If Virginia was to back development of offshore wind, it could become the tipping point in investment by developers, a new report by BVG Associates has concluded.

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