The Obama administration projects the United States could draw 35 percent of its electricity from wind power by 2050, in a new report. The amount of wind power in the U.S. is already on the uptick, with wind representing 30 percent of newly installed electricity-generating capacity in the period from 2009 to 2013. In the “Wind Vision” report, the Department of Energy projects that the country could do even more going forward by installing up to 11 gigawatts of new wind-generating capacity each year between now and the middle of the century. That would bring the U.S. to 400 total gigawatts of such capacity installed across the country — enough power for 100 million homes, according to the Energy Department’s estimates. The DOE outlines a path to 35 percent, beginning with 10 percent by 2020 and rising to 20 percent by 2030. They project that the shift to wind power would cause a 1 percent increase in electricity costs through the year 2030, but would produce cost savings of 2 percent by 2050. The report, DOE writes, “concludes that it is both viable and economically compelling” to increase wind-generating capacity to those levels.
Photo Credit: john Vlahakis