Update April 18, 2008: Click here to view a graphical representation of the growth in installed wind power in the USA
Although wind power contributes only a tiny fraction of total global energy supply, the amount of power generated from the wind continues to exhibit dramatic year over year growth. In 2007, installed global wind power capacity increased 27%, from 74 GW in 2006 to 94 GW. That's a big jump & is certainly excellent news that signals the market's endorsement of wind energy.
How much is the market spending on wind power? According to this report, $117.2 billion was invested on renewable energy in 2007 &:
Wind power drew the greatest amount of investments, followed by solar energy and energy efficiency, while biofuels investments slowed due to surging costs for crops.
Even more impressive, China jumped onto the wind power scene in a big way in 2007. China added 3.4 GW of wind power capacity, bringing total capacity to 6 GW. China is truly amazing. Everything in China right now is booming off the charts. There should be little question as to what underlies $90 oil ... China's demand for energy - any energy - is a runaway train right now. This wind number - a 131% year over year increase - is a testament to that fact.
In the US, installed wind capacity in 2007 jumped to 16.8 GW from 11.6 GW in 2006, an increase of 45%.
So, at the end of 2007, installed wind power capacity was 94 GW & the US represented 18% of the total. At 6% of the total, China moved onto the global radar. It should be interesting to watch China zoom up the list. In about 5 years they'll probably be number one.