Wind Could Supply One-Fifth of Global Energy by 2030

Wind Could Supply One-Fifth of Global Energy by 2030

In Dust Control, Energy, Wind & Solar by Frank Elswick

A global focus on clean energy is paving the way for wind to become a major contributor to the world’s energy grid.

Wind power could supply 20% of the world’s energy by 2030, according to a report released by the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC).

“By 2030 wind power could reach 2,110 GW and supply up to 20% of global electricity, creating 2.4 million new jobs and reducing CO2 emissions by more than 3.3 billion tons per year, and attract annual investment of about €200 billion,” reports the GWEC’s biannual Global Wind Energy Outlook.

Further advances in wind power technology could revolutionize the way Americans think about energy. In 2010, estimates by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory placed the United States’ wind potential at 10,000 GW, but America was only tapping into 35 GW of that potential.

Projects aiming to reach this benchmark have met a gamut of obstacles. Proposed wind projects have failed due to political pushback, questions about reliability, and a failure to secure energy contracts with distributors.

However, wind power is now the fastest-growing energy source in the world, due in large part to the fact that it is becoming more cost-competitive. According to the Wind Energy Foundation, there is currently a global installed capacity of 432,883 megawatts. Offshore wind power has taken off in Europe since 2014, producing 11.5 gigawatts (GW) a year, and China’s wind power industry is booming. In 2015, China produced 145.4 GW of wind power, accounting for 33.6% of the global total.

Big Plans Coming to Fruition

The United States’ wind industry is now beginning to find its footing. The country’s first offshore wind farm, Block Island Wind Farm, is scheduled to open within the next month and will provide enough energy to power 17,000 homes. Built just off the shore of Rhode Island, the small, five-turbine facility is a small step in what its developer, Deepwater Wind, hopes will one day be a much larger scope project. The developer also plans to build a 15-turbine, 90-megawatt facility 30 miles southeast of Montauk on Long Island.

The approval of the Block Island facility — along with the Department of Energy’s dedication of $40 million to the development of wind energy operations in Maine, New Jersey, and Lake Erie — could serve as stepping stones to bringing this promising energy source into the mainstream.

Solutions for Wind Farm Construction

As wind power continues to grow, Midwest Industrial Supply, Inc. is there to provide environmentally safe solutions for onshore wind farm facilities across the country. Midwest offers a variety of award-winning dust control products that suppress up to 95% of fugitive dust and stabilize soil on-site. Soil-Sement® is a high performance, critical application polymer emulsion designed to strengthen unpaved surfaces and increase load-bearing strength. Like all of our products, Soil-Sement is environmentally safe, non-toxic, non-corrosive, and does not pollute groundwater.

Midwest prides itself on guiding wind farm operators towards cost-effective, regulation-compliant, and environmentally safe solutions — so that you can focus on providing essential power to homes and businesses across the country.

Frank is the sales unit manager of Midwest's road construction and natural paving markets.