This writer calls what is happening in wind energy today comparable to the 1849 California gold rush. Not quite right: A lot more people are going to succeed in this rush.
Wind power comes of age; Government, industry, greens need to forge functional partnership
Joe Gschwendtner, June 23, 2007 (Rocky Mountain News)
The wind energy industry
do you notice a trend? (click to enlarge)
In a summary of the recent American Wind Energy Association’s conference, WindPower 2007, the growth of the industry is compared to the California gold rush of 1849.
The industry’s booming growth, as displayed at the June 3-6 wind energy conference, is NOW.
The boom is worldwide. The conference was in Los Angeles.
- 3 biggest needs: new transmission, bringing the cost down and workable compromises between political elements
- The conference theme was "Growing the Wind Business" – it is. The goal of 20% of electricity by 2030 looks reasonable.
- A vast array of corporate and manufacturing interests are investing in wind. Example: John Deere.
- The Supreme Court found that greenhouse gases are pollutants and the EPA must regulate them.
- Sen. John Thune’s (R-S.D.) bill extended the $19 per megawatt federal production tax credit another five years.
- States across the country are passing mandates renewables as a part of power production. The senate rejected a national RPS of 15% by 2015 but the House is considering 20% by 2020.
-European countries and companies are investing bigtime.
- American industry is ramping up.
what's at the end of the rainbow? (click to enlarge)
Gschwendtner: “It is crucial that government make sustained support available to wind-development interests for the long term with predictable tax credits. Transmission proximity problems cannot be resolved without the government powers of moral suasion. Colorado and Texas lead the way, but many more governors and legislatures have yet to see the light. The stage is set for the captains of industry who must make the difference - managing ever more efficiently, with research budgets yielding advanced technology that can make the sector profitable without subsidies. Will American engineering and business ingenuity again rise to the challenge? You've likely already guessed the answer. But of course you have - it's blowing in the wind.”