Update: US 214MW Q1 additions

The United States installed 214MW of new wind capacity in the first quarter, but 2014 promises to be a solid growth year with more than 13GW of projects under construction on 1 April, according to data released by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).

The most wind capacity was installed in Michigan (136 MW), followed by Minnesota (48 MW), New Mexico (20 MW) and New York (10 MW)

The trade group says projects are being developed in 21 states led by Texas with more than 8GW under construction followed by Iowa, Kansas and North Dakota, with more than 1GW, 700MW and 600MW, respectively.

AWEA identified several large Texas projects including 500MW South Plains owned by Westerly Wind, 400MW Texas Wind Farm owned by New Generation Power and a partner, and 300MW Green Pastures owned by Capital Dynamics, a Swiss-based global fund manager.

AWEA says that 133 turbines were installed in the first quarter, compared to a single 1.6MW unit in the same year-ago period.

General Electric was the dominant turbine supplier during the quarter with 193.3MW followed by Vestas with 18.8MW and PowerWind with 900kW. GE turbines installed were rated between 1.5MW and 1.70MW each.

Almost 1GW of new power purchase agreements were announced in the first quarter, building on 8GW signed in 2013.

“Utilities and industrial ratepayers continue to see the value of wind energy as a fixed-price source of energy with no fuel price risk, which hedges against volatile prices of other fuels,” says AWEA chief executive Tom Kiernan.

The US had 61.32GW of wind capacity in place on 1 April. The largest states by capacity on 31 March were:

Texas - 12.354GW

California - 5.829GW

Iowa - 5.177GW

Illinois - 3.568GW

Oregon - 3.153GW

Oklahoma - 3.134GW

Minnesota - 3.035GW

Kansas - 2.967GW

Washington - 2.808GW

Colorado - 2.332GW