After some further reflection, it occurred to me that a good place to find out more about what’s happening on the U.S. wind power manufacturing scene is through our annual Wind Power Outlook reports.
For the past four years (2007-2010), each Outlook report, in addition to providing a broad snapshot of the wind energy industry, has featured a map of the U.S. showing wind equipment factories. Together, they make up an excellent resource for anyone wanting to know more.
Wind power is a brand new manufacturing industry–there are 8,000 parts in a wind turbine, and making them creates all sorts of jobs. At the end of 2009, there were 85,000 people employed in the wind industry. I don’t think wind will ever be as large as the U.S. auto industry was in its heyday, but it could become another major employer like the U.S. aircraft industry.
By Tom Gray, www.awea.org/blog/