Wind power hit important milestones in 2011

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The American Wind Energy Assn. said U.S. wind power achieved several important milestones in 2011.

Among the accomplishments, two states — Iowa and South Dakota — were the first to get an average of 20% of their electrical power from wind energy, the AWEA said. The 20% threshold was first mentioned as an important standard in the Department of Energy’s 2008 report, ’20% Wind Energy by 2030.’

The AWEA said Xcel Energy’s utility in Colorado set a record on Oct. 6th when 55.6% of the electricity consumer by its 1 million customers was coming from wind energy. That broke a record of 53% that had been set in Spain in 2009, the AWEA said.

In terms of total power capacity, the AWEA said California ranks third in the nation, behind Texas and Iowa.


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— Ronald D. White