The United States installed more wind turbine capacity in 2020 than in any other year


The government reported Wednesday that that 2019 and again in 2020, the U.S. installed more wind power capacity than any other generating technology and wind farm construction in Oklahoma added to the total.

Oklahoma remained third in net electricity generation from wind and other sources in 2020 according to the Energy Information Administration. The EIA reported annual wind turbine capacity additions in the United States set a record in 2020, totaling 14.2 gigawatts (GW) and surpassing the previous record of 13.2 GW added in 2012. After this record year for wind turbine capacity additions, total wind turbine capacity in the United States is now 118 GW.

net electricity generation from wind and other sources in selected states


The increased wind capacity was due in part to the impending phaseout of wind tax credits at the end of 2020. In December, Congress extended the credits for another year.

Texas has the most wind turbine capacity among states: 30.2 GW were installed as of December 2020. In 2020, Texas generated more electricity from wind than the next three highest states (Iowa, Oklahoma, and Kansas) combined. However, Texas generates and consumes more total electricity than any other state, and wind remains slightly less than 20% of the state’s electricity generation mix.

In two other states—Iowa and Kansas—wind is the most prevalent source of in-state electricity generation. In both states, wind surpassed coal as the state’s top electricity generation source in 2019.

wind's share of in-state utility-scale electricity generation


Many of the turbines added in late 2020 will contribute to increases in wind-powered electricity generation in 2021. EIA expects wind’s share of electricity generation to increase to 10% in 2021, according to forecasts in EIA’s most recent Short-Term Energy Outlook.

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