Wind Power

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Industry Structure, How Firms Opertate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Quarterly Insight, Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 100 companies in the US use wind power to drive a turbine and produce electric energy, which is provided to electric power transmission systems or electric power distribution systems. Utility-scale turbines are generally defined as turbines that exceed 100KW in capacity, but typically range from 1.5 to 7.5MW. Wind energy accounts for about 8.4% of total US electricity generation and about 55.6% of electricity generation from renewable energy, according to the EIA.

“NIMBY” Opposition

Wind farms often face opposition from local residents concerned about noise, aesthetic impacts, and harm to bird populations.

Dependence on Government Support

Wind power has benefited from federal production tax credits (PTC) during the first 10 years of production and investment tax credits (ITC).

Industry size & Structure

The average wind electric power generator employs about 54-55 workers and generates about $75 million annually.

    • The wind electric power generator industry consists of about 100 firms that employ about 5,600 workers and generate almost $8 billion annually.
    • The industry is highly concentrated; the top eight companies account for 84% of industry revenue.
    • Large firms include Clearway Energy, Energy Capital Partners, and Caithness Energy.
    • Large owners of wind capacity include NextEra Energy, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Avangrid, and EDP.
    • Wind energy accounts for about 8.4% of total US electricity generation and about 55.6% of electricity generation from renewable energy, according to the EIA.
    • More than 56,000 land-based wind turbines operate across 42 states, Guam, and Puerto Rico and represent more than 105.6 gigawatts of energy capacity.
    • Texas, Oklahoma, Iowa, Kansas, and California produced about 58% of total U.S. wind electricity generation in 2020.
    • Alta Wind Energy Center in California is the world’s second-largest wind farm generating 1,548 MW of electricity. Block Island Wind Farm off the coast of Rhode Island was the US’ first offshore wind farm.
                              Industry Forecast
                              Wind Power Industry Growth
                              Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                              Coronavirus Update

                              May 3, 2022 - Pandemic-Related Clean Energy Investments Rise
                              • According to an April 2022 report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), global clean energy spending planned by governments in response to COVID-19 increased 50% over the past five months. The IEA said there is a wide disparity between regions, with developed economies far outspending developing ones. The agency suggests more international cooperation on clean energy development is needed to reach the goal of zero emissions by 2050. However, the IEA also said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is prompting governments to redouble their efforts to reduce their fossil fuel dependency.
                              • Early in the pandemic, electricity demand fell as commercial and industrial consumption dropped. Electricity demand rose 2.2% in 2021, and the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects retail electricity sales will remain relatively unchanged in 2022. The EIA estimates electric power generation capacity from renewables – including wind and solar – accounted for 20% of total US generating capacity in 2021 and has forecasted it will rise to 22% in 2022 and to 23% in 2023. The EIA also estimates the electric power sector added 14 gigawatts (GW) of utility-scale solar generating capacity in 2021 and will add another 20 GW in 2022 and 24 GW in 2023. Most planned solar additions will be in Texas (6.1 GW, or 28% of the national total) and California (4 GW).
                              • One of the Biden administration’s key policy goals is to help the US economy recover from the pandemic through an infrastructure investment plan. The Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA), which President Biden signed into law in November, includes $65 billion for upgrades to electric transmission infrastructure to enhance grid reliability and expand renewables.
                              • Wind power capacity additions in the US continued at a fast clip in the fourth quarter of 2021, despite the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 crisis. In Q4 2021, the wind sector added 5,409 megawatts (MW) of new land-based generating capacity, according to the American Clean Power Association’s latest Clean Power Quarterly Market Report. The top states for solar and wind power additions in 2021 were Texas (7,352 MW), California (2,697 MW), Oklahoma (1,543 MW), Florida (1,382 MW), and New Mexico (1,374). The pipeline for new wind capacity is also robust. As of Q4 2021, land-based wind projects accounted for 20% of the total US renewable energy project pipeline (23,868 MW), and offshore wind held a 15% share (17,458 MW).
                              • Renewable energy projects were already facing supply chain snarls and rising costs due to the pandemic, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has made matters worse, according to The Wall Street Journal. Turbine manufacturers – including Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Vesta Wind Systems, and GE Renewable Energy – have been particularly hard-hit as skyrocketing fuel prices have increased the cost and complexity of transporting huge turbine blades. However, some industry watchers suggest the challenges may be confined to the short- and mid-term as the War in Ukraine has increased the global sense of urgency to wean itself off of Russian oil.
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