A new report on wind energy is being released today. “Wind Power for a Cleaner America, Reducing Global Warming Pollution, Cutting Air Pollution and Saving Water” shows Oklahoma among the top ten wind energy producing states in the U.S. As the seventh top state, Oklahoma is currently producing 5,369,000 megawatt hours per year (MWh/yr) of wind generated energy.
According to Jeannie Quenneville, an Environment American spokesperson, “Oklahoma’s current power generation from wind energy displaces as much global warming pollution as taking close to 600,000 cars off the road per year. Oklahoma has also suffered from severe drought this year, and the Environment America report shows that existing wind power in Oklahoma saves enough water to meet the needs of 38,000 Oklahomans every year.” That amount of water is 1.17 billion gallons of water that would or could have been lost if the power was generated by power plants.
In addition to saving that much water, Oklahoma prevented 3,038,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) from entering the Earth’s atmosphere. These figures will go up when Oklahoma becomes the fourth top wind energy producer by 2016, the report predicts. Our state will save 1.25 billion gallons of water and prevent 3,260,000 metric tons of CO2 from contributing to the Earth’s rising global temperatures.
Oklahoma is positioned in the center of the Heartland, the region with the highest (37 percent) average capacity factors for generating wind power in the nation. With the future completion of 21,900 wind power generating structures in Oklahoma, the total of those facilities is estimated to be 40,400 by 2016. Elizabeth Ridlington and Jordan Schneider of Frontier Group and Rob Sargent and Courtney Abrams, for the Environment America Research and Policy Center wrote this new report. For more information, see the Environment America web site at “www.environmentamerica.org”.