(Bloomberg) — Installations of wind power in the U.S.
surged sixfold last year, making it the largest market for the
technology worldwide after China.
The U.S. added 4.7 gigawatts of new onshore wind capacity
in 2014 compared with 764 megawatts a year earlier, largely due
to the extension of the Production Tax Credit in January 2013,
Bloomberg New Energy Finance said today in a statement. Total
U.S. onshore wind installations are now 64.2 megawatts.
China remains the biggest market for wind with
installations rising a record 38 percent, or 20.7 gigawatts,
from a year earlier, according to BNEF. China’s grid-connected
wind-energy capacity now is 96 gigawatts, more than that of the
entire U.K. power fleet. Wind energy is China’s largest power
source after coal and hydropower.
“This year has seen a couple of special circumstances come
together so it probably isn’t a blueprint for future
development,” David Hostert, European wind-energy analyst for
BNEF, said in the statement. “What is remarkable though is that
more than 1 gigawatt was repowered with new turbines on existing
projects. This means making better use of existing wind sites
and opening up new opportunities for developers and asset owners
in a mature market.”
Germany installed 3.2 gigawatts in 2014, Brazil 2.7
gigawatts and India 2.3 gigawatts, according to BNEF. Both
German and Brazil totals are records for their countries.
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Reed Landberg at
Randall Hackley, Ana Monteiro