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EERE Success Story—Wind Vision: Continuing the Success of Wind Energy

April 2, 2015 - 10:35am


The Wind Vision Report describes potential wind industry scenarios for 2020, 2030, and 2050.

The Wind Vision Report describes potential wind industry scenarios for 2020, 2030, and 2050.

The Energy Department recently released the highly anticipated Wind Vision Report that quantifies the economic, environmental, and social benefits of a robust wind energy future through 2050. Defining a Roadmap of targeted actions that the country can take to build upon wind energy’s continued success, the Wind Vision Report revisits the findings of the 2008 20% Wind by 2030 Report.

The Wind Vision Report takes America’s current installed wind power capacity across all facets of wind energy (land-based, offshore, and distributed) as its baseline—a capacity that has tripled since the 2008 release of the Energy Department’s 20% Wind Energy by 2030 report—and assesses the potential economic, environmental, and social benefits of a Study Scenario where U.S. wind power supplies 10% of the nation’s electrical demand in 2020, 20% in 2030, and 35% in 2050. The Wind Vision Report builds upon the continued the success of the wind industry to date and quantifies a strong wind energy future.

Key Findings of the Wind Vision Report:

  • Wind energy has the potential to provide clean, renewable energy in every state. The Wind Vision Report shows that wind can be a viable source of renewable electricity in all 50 states by 2050.

  • Wind supports a strong domestic supply chain. Wind has the potential to support over 600,000 jobs in manufacturing, installation, maintenance, and supporting services by 2050.

  • Wind is affordable. The price of wind energy is projected to be directly competitive with conventional energy technologies within the next decade.

  • With more wind energy available, the electric utility sector is anticipated to be less sensitive to the volatility in natural gas pricing. By reducing our national vulnerability to price spikes and electrical supply disruptions, wind is anticipated to save consumers $280 billion in natural gas costs by 2050.

  • Wind reduces air pollution emissions. Wind energy already helps the country avoid the emission of over 250,000 metric tons of air pollutants each year, which include sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter. Wind is expected to offset the emission of more than 12.3 gigatonnes of greenhouse gases by 2050.

  • Wind energy preserves water resources. By 2050, wind energy can save 260 billion gallons of water—the equivalent to roughly 400,000 Olympic-size swimming pools—that would have been used by the electric power sector.

  • Wind deployment can increase community revenues. Local communities will be able to collect additional tax revenue from land lease payments and property taxes, reaching $3.2 billion annually by 2050.

To read more about the findings of the Wind Vision Report, download the full report.

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) success stories highlight the positive impact of its work with businesses, industry partners, universities, research labs, and other entities.