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Wind Powering America Webinar: Wind Power Economics: Past, Present, and Future Trends

November 23, 2011 - 1:43pm


Wind turbine prices in the United States have declined, on average, by nearly one-third since 2008, after doubling from 2002 through 2008. Over this entire period, the average nameplate capacity rating, hub height, and rotor swept area of turbines installed in the United States have increased significantly, while other design improvements have also boosted turbine energy production. In combination, these various trends have had a significant–and sometimes surprising–impact on the levelized cost of energy delivered by wind projects.

This webinar will feature three related presentations that explore these historical trends and provide insight on what the future may hold. Mark Bolinger of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory will cover highlights from the recent Lawrence Berkeley report Understanding Trends in Wind Turbine Prices Over the Past Decade, focusing in part on turbine scaling as a critical turbine price driver. Ryan Wiser of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory will demonstrate that–despite putting upward pressure on turbine prices–turbine scaling and other design improvements over this period have provided a net benefit in terms of the cost of wind generation, and that with today's lower turbine prices, the cost of wind generation from soon-to-be-built plants is lower than it has been in years. Finally, Eric Lantz of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory will discuss the potential for further technology-based cost reductions, assuming ongoing turbine scaling and full realization of opportunities for technology improvement.

The webinar is free; no registration is required.