Thanks to better technology and new power lines wind energy is now two-thirds cheaper than just a few years ago. In many states it already competes on price with any other way to make electricity. In just the past five years we’ve reduced costs by 50% and that’s the result of really evolutionary, innovative, incremental investments by the turbine manufacturers and the industry on longer blades, taller towers, better controls. Utility companies have started to voluntarily purchase wind power And the number one reason why is because wind power is the cheapest source of new generation that they can get. [V.O.] And long-term contracts protect consumers from fuel price shocks. The latest turbines can access stronger, more consistent winds in more places. Soon we will be farming the wind in all 50 states. Based on decades of forecasting the wind, we can predict where and when it will generate how much electricity. Technicians at command centers such as this E.On control room in Austin, Texas, monitor wind conditions and the electricity generated by thousands of turbines across the country. One of the misperceptions of wind is that it’s not easily forecasted this actually isn’t true. There’s been a lot of forecasting measures over the last 5, 10 years that wind is very predictable on a daily basis, particularly on an hour-head basis. [Seth Zehler]
We adhere to all the exact same reliability standards that a coal and gas plant would: we have to provide our schedules, our forecasts, we have to provide voltages support. We are integral to the reliability of the grid just like a coal or gas plant would be.