USA: Wind Industry Records Growth in Georgia


Georgia’s wind resource is vast; however, no large-scale wind farms have been built onshore or offshore of the Peach State. Nearly 2,000 megawatts (MW) of onshore wind resource exists in Georgia, and another 60,000 MW resides offshore. A single megawatt of wind capacity can generate enough electricity for up to 300 homes. Modern onshore wind turbines are generally 2 MW in capacity, and offshore wind turbines are currently available up to 5 MW.

In 2008, the U.S. Department of Energy published a report on how to achieve 20% of the nation’s electrical supply from onshore and offshore wind power. In that report, the DOE estimated that Georgia would supply up to 1,000 MW of onshore and offshore wind energy combined by 2030. Up to 20,000 manufacturing jobs would be created in Georgia from this scenario. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory estimates that for every one megawatt of offshore wind capacity built, more than 20 jobs are created.

Recently, Southern Company announced they are investigating the offshore wind resource potential off the state.

Already several companies in Georgia work in the wind industry, even though the state has no large-scale wind farms installed.

Despite the wind energy industry presence in Georgia already, if the state is going to achieve the Department of Energy’s scenario to develop up to 1,000 MW worth of wind capacity and generate up to 20,000 in-state manufacturing jobs by 2030, the state will need to recognize renewable energy as a valuable economic engine. Georgia should create a renewable portfolio standard and the state’s federal delegates should propose and support stable tax incentives for the wind industry.


Source: Clean Energy, July 07, 2011;