Enabling Wind Power Nationwide

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The next generation of wind turbines could make reliable, cost-effective wind power a reality in all 50 states. This report, Enabling Wind Power Nationwide, explains that advanced wind turbines with taller towers and longer blades will allow us to reach stronger, more consistent winds found high above the ground, unlocking wind energy's potential across an additional 700,000 square miles—roughly one-fifth of the land area of the United States. This report highlights wind energy’s potential to generate electricity even in states with no utility-scale wind energy development today.

Through technological advancements, coupled with continued improvements in siting practices and considerations, technologies focused on taller wind turbine towers and larger rotors—currently under development by the Energy Department and its partnering national labs, universities, and private-sector companies—America can more efficiently capture the stronger and more consistent wind resources typically found at greater heights above ground level.

These wind turbines would stand 110 to 140 meters tall in “hub height” (calculated at the center of the rotor), up to 1.5 times the height of the Statue of Liberty. Their immense scale lets them take advantage of better wind resources, unobstructed by things like trees and buildings—and with blades longer than 60 meters, they can generate electricity more efficiently than ever before.

Larger, more efficient wind turbines will create new opportunities for wind energy generation and job growth in places like the southeastern U.S., where wind speeds are generally low. This map above shows areas where new turbine technology will lead to expanded access to wind power, highlighted in orange.