From an American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) press release:
As the U.S. wind energy industry stayed on pace for another record year to install more than 3,000 MW, Texas, with a cumulative total that now stands at 2,370 MW, for the first time topped historic leader California with 2,323 MW, as the top state in cumulative wind power capacity, according to the AWEA Second Quarter Market Report.
AWEA forecasts that the industry remains on track to install more than 3,000 MW of new wind capacity, which would decisively eclipse the previous record of 2,431 MW set in 2005. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that slightly less than 10,000 MW of new natural gas plants will be brought online in 2006, and that less than 400 MW of new coal- and oil-fired generating plants will be added, making wind power second only to natural gas in new capacity and new power generation for the second year in a row.
At WINDPOWER 2006, AWEA, the U.S. Department of Energy, and National Renewable Energy Laboratory committed to develop an action plan focused on providing up to 20% of the nation's electricity from wind energy
To reach the 20% benchmark and for the strong industry growth to continue even in the short term, the federal production tax credit, which expires at the end of 2007, needs to be extended in a timely fashion before it expires; furthermore, a long-term extension is needed to allow wind energy businesses to operate and invest in a stable environment and to further reduce costs. Added transmission capacity will also be needed to ship large amounts of power from windy areas to market.