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An Oklahoma wind turbine

Wind Energy: Electricity and Economic Potential in Oklahoma

Background

U.S Department of Energy

The U.S Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's map of wind energy potential.

Wind energy is expanding in Oklahoma, especially in western parts of the state.

As a resource, Oklahoma’s wind ranks No. 9 in the nation, according to the American Wind Energy Association. Oklahoma has 3,134 megawatts of “installed wind capacity,” AWEA data show.

In 2013, 14.8 percent of the electricity generated in Oklahoma came from wind-power, which means the state ranked No. 7 nationally, the trade group’s data show.

Oklahoma ranked No. 4 for total wind-energy generated in 2013 — 10.8 million megawatt hours, according to the AWEA.

Several wind farms are under construction, and Gov. Mary Fallin and commerce officials hope the state will become a center for manufacturing turbines and towers. The jobs potential has led several state technical schools to start programs to train and certify workers in repairing and servicing wind turbines.

Wind energy is largely unregulated in Oklahoma, and local governments have been dealing with disputes between landowners and property developers over wind farm projects.

In the 2013 Oklahoma Legislative session, two bills were proposed that could impact Oklahoma’s wind industry. Senate Bill 1440 would impose a moratorium on wind farms east of Interstate 35, while SB 1559 would establish setbacks, noise limits, and rules about how turbines would be decommissioned.

Latest Posts

Why Oklahoma’s Wind Energy Future Could be Shaped by Osage County

Bob Hamilton, director of the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve near Pawhuska, Okla.

Oklahoma is moving up the national ranks in wind-generated electricity. But as wind farms expand into northeastern Oklahoma, developers are facing a team of unlikely allies: oil interests and environmentalists. Wind farm developers encounter opposition wherever projects are planned, but the debate in Oklahoma is perhaps most magnified in Osage County, where there’s a confluence [...]

Wind Projects in Osage County Dividing ‘Neighbors and Families’

Wind energy companies have high hopes for Osage County. It’s windy, of course, but unlike other windy areas of western Oklahoma, Osage County is a lot closer to the heavy-duty electrical infrastructure needed to transport power from turbines to the grid. Wind farms have met resistance in other Oklahoma communities, but opposition to the Osage [...]

Gov. Mary Fallin Signs Distributed Electricity Generation Bill

Gov. Mary Fallin on Monday signed Senate Bill 1456, a measure that would allow regulated electric utilities to charge customers who generate electricity from rooftop solar panels or small wind turbines. The bill allows utilities to create a new customer class, The Oklahoman‘s Paul Monies reports:

Conservative, Environmental and Green-Energy Groups Fighting Solar Surcharge Bill

An “unlikely” coalition of environmentalists, solar advocates and conservative groups are opposing a bill that would allow electric utilities to levy a surcharge on customers who install rooftop solar panels or small wind turbines. “They aren’t exactly teaming up, ” but they’re all attacking Senate Bill 1456, authored by Sen. A.J. Griffin, R-Guthrie, The Oklahoman‘s [...]

Why Small Solar and Wind Generators Are Worried About Surcharge Legislation

Solar panel and wind turbine technology is improving rapidly, and many small-scale customers are excited by the potential to generate electricity and sell it — outright, or for credit — back to the grid. But proposed legislation, Senate Bill 1456, would levy a monthly surcharge on small generators, The Oklahoman‘s Paul Monies reports. Wind and [...]

As Wind Energy Moves Into Eastern Oklahoma, Resistance Turns Political

Joe Bush, owner of a ranch near Shidler, Okla., has signed agreements to lease land for two wind farms.

Oklahoma is one of the country’s top wind energy producers, and companies want to build more turbines across the state. For many landowners, wind farms can be a financial windfall. But as wind energy moves into regions unaccustomed to turbines, opponents have taken the fight to the state Capitol.

Oklahoma Moves Up the Ranks by Adding More Wind Energy to its Electricity Mix

Wind energy accounted for 14.8 percent of the electricity generated in Oklahoma in 2013, an American Wind Energy analysis of data from the U.S. Energy Information Agency show. Oklahoma now ranks No. 7 nationally, a step up from the No. 9 ranking the state earned in 2012 when wind power comprised 10.5 percent of the [...]

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