Despite Economy, Wind Power Grows 31% Globally

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Despite Economy, Wind Power Grows 31% Globally

Wind energy is now an major player in the global energy market.
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Despite Economy, Wind Power Grows 31% Globally
Wednesday, February 24, 2010 - 9:48am


Wind energy is now an major player in the global energy market. The industry grew 31-percent in 2009, making it worth about $63 billion. It's estimated the industry employs half a million people worldwide.

Asia continues to grow the most. China experienced yet another year of over 100-percent growth; its fifth year doing so! Total installations are up to 157.9 gigawatts and China is responsible for one-third of that.

“The continued rapid growth of wind power despite the financial crisis and economic downturn is testament to the inherent attractiveness of the technology, which is clean, reliable and quick to install. Wind power has become the power technology of choice a growing number of countries around the world,” said Steve Sawyer, GWEC’s Secretary General.

Markets in Asia, North America and Europe each installed more than 10 gigawatts of new wind capacity last year. China went from 12.1 gigawatts in 2008 to 25.1 gigawatts. Smaller additions in India (1.2 gigawatts) and in other countries like Japan, South Korea and Taiwan are giving Asia that leading edge.

However, the United States has a comfortable lead in terms of local installed capacity. We saw an installed capacity increase of 39-percent bringing our grid-connected capacity to 35 gigawatts.

“The Chinese government is taking very seriously its responsibility to limit CO2 emissions while providing energy for its growing economy. China is putting strong efforts into developing the country’s tremendous wind resource. Given the current growth rates, it can be expected that the even the unofficial target of 150 GW will be met well ahead of 2020,” said Li Junfeng, Secretary General of the Chinese Renewable Energy Industries Association.

Despite a disappointing Copenhagen, wind power grew out of national energy policy where renewables are seen as a staple for economic recovery. And these are remarkable results in such a difficult year.

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Keywords: America | Asia | China | Economy | Emissions | Energy | Gigawatts | co2 | power | wind