Wind Vision: A New Era For Wind Power In The United States
The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Wind and Water Power Technologies Office conducted the Wind Vision study to evaluate future pathways for wind power to meet US electricity needs and decarbonization goals. As part of the study, DOE models a Baseline Scenario with US wind capacity held constant at 2013 levels of 61 gigawatts, a Business-as-Usual Scenario (BAU), and a Study Scenario. The Study Scenario, which is the primary analysis scenario, evaluates the costs, benefits, and other impacts associated with a pathway through which wind energy is able to meet 10%, 20%, and 35% of the nation’s end-use demand by 2020, 2030, and 2050, respectively. Incremental transmission-related expenditures of the Study Scenario are estimated to total $60 billion compared to the Baseline Scenario. The many benefits afforded by high levels wind penetration facilitated by the transmission expansion modeled in the study includes, among other things, cumulative system cost savings of $149 billion by 2050, 12.3 gigatonnes of avoided GHG emissions through 2050, and quantified consumer cost savings of $280 billion through 2050.