[Ed. – Well, even if we do have to count only one statistic to make it so. I’m totally in love with the Charlie Brown reference. When was the last time you heard one-a them rattlesnake oilmen quote Charlie Brown?]
The United States has more wind energy powering its grid than any other country in the world. Some mistakenly believe that China has become the leading producer of wind energy, surpassing the U.S. in this sector like so many others. It is true that China has more megawatts (MW) of wind turbines installed than the U.S. — over 90,000 MW to just over 60,000 MW for the US. However, a better measure is the total amount of electricity, measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh), that each country produces from wind and delivers to customers each year. Capacity (MW) measures wind turbine production and installation, but it is the electrical energy (kWh) delivered to the grid that powers our factories, businesses and homes.
According to recent reports by the International Energy Agency and the Global Wind Energy Council, China’s wind industry produced and delivered less than 138 billion kWh in 2013. According to theAmerican Wind Energy Association and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration, the United States produced over 167 billion kWh, over 20 percent more than China. This confirms what many in the wind industry have thought for some time: that by the important measure of energy delivered to the grid, the United States is the # 1 wind energy producer in the world. Indeed, as the chart below shows, the U.S. has been the world leader by this measure since 2008. …
We should be proud that we have (finally) joined the top ranks of wind producers but recognize that, as Charlie Brown said, “There is no heavier burden than a great potential!” The U.S. Department of Energy is working on a major “Wind Vision” study to be released next year that will provide just such a roadmap for how the industry can grow to supply 35 percent of U.S. electricity by 2050, making it one of the leading sources, if not the leading source, of electrical energy.