With another generation record, Texas edges closer to 50% wind penetration
- The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) reached a new wind generation system high by getting 48.28% of its 27,245 MW load, or 13,154 MW, from the resource at 1:10 a.m. on March 23. This surpassed February 18’s record-setting 45.14% wind penetration
- ERCOT has 15,764 MW of installed wind capacity and its peak use of wind capacity is still February 18’s 14,023 MW. Wind energy accounted for 18.4% of ERCOT’s 2015 generation.
- ERCOT delivers about 90% of Texas electricity, with some regions in the North and West served by MISO and SPP. Over 20% of ERCOT’s nearly 80,000 MW generation capability comes from the state’s U.S.-leading 17,713 MW of installed wind capacity.
Wind energy records were set across the country in late February. On Feb. 19, the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), which serves all or part of 15 states from Minnesota to Louisiana, obtained a record 13,084 MW from wind. The Southwest Power Pool (SPP), which serves the lower Midwest, got a record 43.9% wind penetration that day.
Texas is likely to set more records, as it led the U.S. in new builds in 2015 with 3,615 MW, more than twice Oklahoma’s second-plac 1,402 MW. Texas accounts for over 53% of U.S. wind capacity construction activity, according to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA). Its 2016 new wind capacity is expected to be 7,863 MW, 63% of ERCOT’s new generation.
The U.S. wind industry built 8,598 MW of new capacity in 2015, has a cumulative installed capacity of nearly 74.5 GW, and has reduced wind’s installed cost 66% since 2008, according to AWEA’s 2015 Market Report.
Wind energy now provides about 4.9% U.S. electricity, but the Department of Energy forecasts that it will supply 20% of the country’s electricity by 2030.
- RTO Insider ERCOT Approaches 50% Wind Penetration Mark