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WIND FACTS

  • A typical wind turbine is generating some electricity 65% to 90% of the time, depending on the wind speed and patterns at a given location.
  • American wind farms generated 13 billion kWh in 2003 (about 0.3% of U.S. electricity generation), enough to fully serve more than 1.3 million households.
  • A single, one-megawatt wind turbine displaces 2,000 tons of carbon dioxide each year (equivalent to planting a square mile of forest), based on the current average U.S. utility fuel mix. (Source for emissions figures: U.S. Energy Information Agency)
  • U.S. wind energy potential is estimated at over 10,000 billion kWh annually - more than twice the total electricity generated from all sources in America today. (Source: Pacific Northwest Laboratory)
  • A modern, utility-scale wind turbine is about the size of a Boeing 747. It generates enough elextricity to power over 300 average American homes. Forty thousand tons of coal or 131,000 barrels of oil would be needed to generate the same amount electricity as a single 1.5-MW wind turbine generates over 20 years.
  • Only 2% to 3% of the land within the boundaries of a wind farm is needed for the generators and their service roads. The rest remains available for farming, ranching, or other land uses.
  • A modern wind turbine 300 meters away is no noisier than the reading room of a library, and quieter than the sound of the blowing wind.
  • Wind farms generate clean power without causing any emissions or pollution.
  • Of all types of electricity generation, wind is one of the least harmful to birds and other wildlife.
  • Modern turbines are equipped with power electronics that process over 200 types of data from wind speeds and oil temperature to voltage dips on the grid. An entire wind farm can be monitored from a laptop computer!