The Department of Energy released its 2010 Wind Technologies Market Report produced by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in July. The report analyzes trends in capacity, manufacturing, performance, and costs. According to the report, wind power capacity grew by a healthy 15% in 2010, representing $11 billion in new investment despite the economic downturn. Component manufacturing also increased. Nine of the eleven wind turbine manufacturers with the largest share of the U.S. market in 2010 had one or more manufacturing facilities in the United States, and a number of new manufacturing facilities both domestic and foreign opened in 2010. Domestically produced goods used in U.S. wind power projects increased to 68% in 2009-2010, up from 52% in 2005-2006.
Other highlights from the report include:
- Nine offshore wind projects totaling 2,322 MW have advanced significantly in the permitting and development process. Three of the nine projects have signed power purchase agreements.
- The environment for wind power project finance improved steadily throughout 2010. By the end of the year, approximately $4 billion in tax equity was committed to wind power projects – more than twice as much as was invested in 2009.
- The average installed cost of wind power projects held steady in 2010 but is expected to decline in the near term, and wind turbine prices continued to decline from the 2008 peak.
- Transmission development continued to grow with 8,800 circuit miles of new transmission added in 2010, another 3,100 miles under construction, and an additional 39,000 circuit miles projected by 2020.
- Lower wind turbine and wind power pricing and key federal incentives for wind energy will lead to moderately higher wind power capacity additions in 2011 and 2012.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 12 Nobel Prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.