Wind power saved the Texas power grid from the Polar Vortex

2014 Polar vortex with wind turbines
Public Domain NOAA

Texas is a wind power superstar. The state went from 184 megawatts of wind capacity in 2000 to 12,212 megawatts in 2012, and I'm sure that when the 2013 numbers are out, we'll see a much higher number. That compares very favorably to the wind power #2 state, which is Caliofornia with 5,549MW in 2012, less than half the wind capacity of Texas.

NPR/Screen capture

This investment in clean energy saved Texas' bacon during the polar vortex that dropped temperatures across most of North-America (check out these amazing photos for 'Chiberia'). After all, record cold weather means record energy demand; on Tuesday at 8 a.m. CST, demand reached a never seen before peak of 57,277 megawatts.

Thankfully: "Sufficient generation and higher wind output from West Texas wind farms boosted the state's electric supply Tuesday compared to Monday when the grid operator declared an emergency as power plants shut unexpectedly, reducing supply."

Wikimedia/CC BY-SA 3.0

Texas is not the only state where wind played a crucial role in the past few days. The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) has a piece about it here.

Via Reuters, ThinkProgress

See also: California added more rooftop solar capacity in 2013 than in the past 30 years combined!

Tags: Texas | Wind Power | Winter

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