Wind power could help Midwesterners save up to $9.5 billion annually
Introducing more wind energy into the electric grid could bring down wholesale electricity prices by more than 25 percent in the U.S. Midwest by 2020, new research from Synapse Energy Economics suggests.
According to the analysis, more wind farms could send wholesale prices down by as much as $10 per megawatt hour (MWh) shortly after deployment, and by 2030, wholesale prices could be down by nearly $50 per MWh.
"This analysis illustrates a basic fact about our power system – building transmission to unleash cheaper, domestic resources makes strong economic sense," said John Jimison, managing director of the Energy Future Coalition and Americans for a Clean Energy Grid. "Transmission makes up the smallest sliver of the electricity bill, but can make power markets more competitive and drive down costs for everyone."
According to the American Wind Energy Association, 1,695 MW of wind power capacity were installed in the first quarter of 2012, while another 8,900 MW are in the process of being installed in 31 states. In the last five years, the U.S. wind industry has added more than 35 percent of all new generating capacity.