November 2011 – It was reported recently that wind turbines in Texas, in the territory of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), set a new electricity output record on October 7.
A whopping 15.2% of ERCOT’s electricity demand was given by wind on October 7th. That amounts to about 7,400 Megawatts.
Michael Goggin, the America Wind Energy Association’s Manager of Transmission Policy, said, “The new record set by wind on the main Texas grid is good news for consumers. Wind generation offsets the use of expensive fossil fuels, is pollution-free, and uses virtually no water, unlike other sources of electricity.”
With the record breaking drought during the 2011 summer, the huge water advantages provided by the increased wind electricity generation capacity is a welcome addition. Also, wind energy is the cheapest long-term option for generating new electricity in most regions as it requires no ongoing fuel.
ERCOT has reported that in Texas, wind energy “represents nearly 58 percent of all new generation seen in planning stages over the next few years.”
Texas already leads the nation, by far, in wind electricity generation. Iowa is 2nd, with California rounding out the top 3.