International Energy Agency (IEA) Wind 2011 Annual Report Now Available for Download

August 13, 2012

The IEA Wind 2011 Annual Report contains information on wind energy generation capacity, progress toward national objectives, benefits to national economies, issues affecting industry growth, costs of projects and turbines, national incentive programs, and research and development (R&D) results from the 20 International Energy Agency (IEA) member countries and China. The Executive Summary synthesizes the information for 2011 and includes data on capacity and generation since 1995.

Key statistics found in the report include:

  • The world added about 40 gigawatts (GW) of wind generation in 2011, a 24% increase.
  • Capacity increased in the IEA Wind member countries as a whole, from less than 5 GW in 1995 to more than 200 GW in 2011.
  • More than 85% of the world’s wind-generating capacity resides in the 20 IEA member countries and China.
  • Among the IEA Wind member countries, offshore wind systems totaled about 3.3 GW at the end of 2011.
  • Electrical production from wind met 2.8% of the total electrical demand in IEA member countries.

According to the report’s U.S. chapter, produced by the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the United States installed more than 6,800 megawatts (MW) of wind capacity in 2011, bringing the nation’s total capacity to almost 47,000 MW. Since then, the U.S. capacity has increased to 50,000 MW and is contributing 3% of the total U.S. electricity supply.

To achieve 20% wind power by 2030, the Energy Department’s Wind Program is conducting research to address the challenges faced by the wind energy industry and to promote industry growth. Areas of research include electrical grid integration, complex flow characterization, wind resource assessment and forecasting, wind turbine component failure mitigation, advanced rotor and drivetrain development, improved manufacturing methods, public acceptance through education, responsible siting to avoid use conflicts, and offshore wind technologies development. In 2011, the Energy Department awarded $43 million for 41 offshore wind R&D projects across 20 states over the next 5 years, and in March 2012, the Energy Department announced that $180 million will be made available over the next 6 years to accelerate the development and deployment of breakthrough offshore wind power technologies. The funding is subject to Congressional appropriations.

Read more about the status of the nation’s wind industry and the efforts of the Energy Department’s Wind Program in the U.S chapter of the IEA Wind 2011 Annual Report.