5 Things You May Not Know About Distributed Wind Power
Stay up to date with your wind energy knowledge with the following fun facts about the U.S. distributed wind power.
- Since 2012, more than 70 Mega Watts (MW) of U.S. small wind turbines have been exported to at least 26 different countries representing a value of over $400 million.
- Distributed wind is a domestic industry that helps contribute to the economy. Supply chain vendors provide the mechanical, electrical, tower, and blade components for small wind turbines. U.S.-based small wind turbine manufacturers utilize U.S. supply chain vendors which are comprised of hundreds of manufacturing facilities and vendors that support jobs in manufacturing, retail, construction, and maintenance.
- As the distributed-wind marketplace matures, third parties are providing certification of small and medium wind turbines to ensure turbines perform as advertised. The International Code Council-Small Wind Certification Council lists the small wind turbines it has certified on its website. The U.S. Department of Energy encourages consumers who are interested in purchasing small wind turbines to buy ones that are certified. It should be noted that wind technologies must be installed in specific wind resources to operate as intended.
- Reducing utility bills and hedging against potentially rising electricity rates are common reasons for installing distributed wind. In addition, many utilities compensate the distributed wind (or other generation) owner for excess energy generated that gets returned to the grid—a practice called “net metering.”
- There are many different types of distributed wind consumers, including residential, agricultural, industrial, commercial, governmental, institutional, and utility. Different turbines are deployed to meet the specific needs of each consumer.
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