The wind energy industry worldwide installed more than US$14 billion worth of new generating equipment last year, an increase of 25 percent over 2004, according to a recent report by the Global Wind Energy Council. The Environment News Service reports the United States led the way, with an addition of 2,431 megawatts of capacity, enough to power 680,700 U.S. households per year. Germany was next with 1,808 MW, and Spain was third with 1,764 MW of new generating capacity.
The American Wind Energy Association says depending on whether the tax credit is renewed by the U.S. Congress will such an increase in production continue. Currently, a three-year window of stability exists in the federal incentive for wind energy.
Meanwhile, Whole Foods is switching to all wind power for their electricity, making them the biggest corporate user of wind power in the country. The company is buying enough wind power credits to cover energy use at all of its U.S. stores, bakeries, distribution centers, regional offices and its Austin headquarters.