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For the third consecutive year, the U.S. was home to the fastest-growing wind power market in the world in 2007, according to the 2007 edition of the "Annual Report on U.S. Wind Power Installation, Cost and Performance Trends" released by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Specifically, U.S. wind power capacity increased by 46% in 2007, representing a $9 billion investment in new wind projects. At this pace, wind is on a path to becoming a significant contributor to the U.S. power mix: Wind projects accounted for 35% of all new electric generating capacity added in the U.S. in 2007, and more than 200 GW of wind are in various stages of development throughout the country.

"By consolidating this information into a single, publicly available document, the DOE and Berkeley Lab hope to provide a valuable resource to industry participants, energy regulators and state and local policy-makers," says Mark Bolinger co-author of the Berkeley Lab report. "Indeed, the inaugural 2006 edition released last year has quickly become a key benchmark by which the wind industry judges its progress, and by which regulators and policy-makers evaluate the merits of wind power."

Some of the key findings from the just-released 2007 edition include:

- 1.2% of the nation's electricity supply could be met with the wind capacity online at the end of 2007,

- states as diverse as Texas, Colorado, Illinois, and Oregon led the U.S. in annual wind capacity growth in 2007,

- sixteen states had more than 100 MW of wind capacity installed by the end of 2007, with six topping 1,000 MW, and

- the new turbine and component manufacturing facilities opened or announced in 2007 alone could create more than 4,700 new jobs in the U.S.

Berkeley Lab's contributions to this report were funded by the Wind & Hydropower Technologies Program, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy of the DOE.

For the full report, visit eetd.lbl.gov/ea/ems/re-pubs

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Energy

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