Nordex has been active in the United States of America since 2008, with two main office locations in Chicago, Illinois – which acts as the region’s head office – and West Branch, Iowa. Between these two locations, and those working out in the field, Nordex USA, Inc. has a total of 460 employees. With the average project in the US comprising 200 MW, the Group’s total installed capacity here is 4,640 MW (EOY 2019), with another 453 turbines, amounting to a total 1,767 MW under construction in 2020.
In the current US market, 7.3 per cent of all electricity generated comes from wind. Throughout the country as a whole, there is currently a total of 107,443 MW of installed capacity with just under 60,000 wind turbines across farms in 41 states. Compared to many countries, especially those within Europe, the US landscape is vast and varied. Projects located within the Midwest corridor, from Texas to North Dakota, are generally MW constrained or grid constrained, whereas those located in the northeast are nearly all land constrained. Until recently, about 78 per cent of the projects had been installed using the AW platform through the end of 2019. But with the market finally moving toward larger generators and taller towers, the Delta4000 platform is currently the most competitive turbine, with 960 MW planned for construction in 2020.
WHAT’S THE OUTLOOK FOR ALTERNATIVE ENERGIES IN THE US?
Since 1992, an incentive program known as the Production Tax Credit, or PTC, has been in effect in the US. This provides a tax credit of just over two cents per kilowatt-hour for the first 10 years of wind farm operation, and is in the process of stepping down in value before it ends entirely 2024. There are two ways in which a project can qualify for the PTC, either through start of construction (physical work of a significant nature) or through incurring 5 per cent of the project’s costs (i.e. purchasing equipment), known as the safe harbour method. At the end of 2019, the United States Congress extended PTC to the end of 2020, which means facilities that start construction in 2020 have 4 years to achieve commercial operation (2024) and can obtain 60 per cent of the PTC value for 10 years. In addition to this, in May 2020, all projects started in 2016 and 2017 were granted an extra year to be placed in service and qualify for the PTC in response to the impact of coronavirus-related delays to workforce and supply chains.
With a usual average of 7.17 GW per year, together with other forms of renewable energy, it is expected that wind will likely exceed 14 GW in 2020, as developers utilise the advantage of this expiring subsidy.
LOCAL NORDEX GROUP REPRESENTATIVES
CEO, North America
Pablo Pulpeiro started his career in the Wind Energy Industry in 2005, holding several positions at Gamesa Energy in Madrid and Philadelphia. He joined Acciona Windpower USA as Finance Director in 2008 and was later on appointed CFO at Acciona Windpower. In 2015, he moved to Sao Paulo to lead the activities of Nordex Brazil as Country Manager, and was appointed as CEO of the North American Division within the Nordex Group in August 2017.
Vice President Sales, North America
Thomas Donoghue has been with Nordex USA since August of 2009 and leads business development, turbine sales and contract execution for the North American market.
The Group has installed more than 28 GW of wind energy capacity in over 40 markets and generated sales of around EUR 3.3 billion in 2019. The company has around 7,500 employees. The joint manufacturing capacity includes factories in Germany, Spain, Brazil, the United States, India, Argentina and Mexico. The product portfolio is focused on onshore turbines in the 2.4 to 5.X MW class, which are designed to meet the market requirements of countries with limited available space and regions with limited grid capacity.