Market reports for wind energy, advanced vehicles, and fuel cell technologies highlight improving U.S. global competitiveness in the clean energy economy.
18 July 2011
U.S. clean energy gains competitiveness
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released this
week three 2010 market reports, which detail the
market conditions and trends for wind energy,
advanced vehicles, and fuel cell technologies. The
reports highlight improving U.S. global
competitiveness in the clean energy economy.
Regarding wind turbines, for instance, domestic
manufacturing increases, performance improves,
and prices decline driving the cost of wind energy
Wind turbines in Oregon. © Charles Bolin
The reports, facilitated by the DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE),
signal important developments across clean energy and energy efficiency sectors.
Wind energy costs down in coming years
The 2010 Wind Technologies Market Report, produced by DOE?s Lawrence Berkeley National
Laboratory, analyzes trends in wind power capacity, manufacturing, performance, and costs.
The results indicate that wind energy installations comprised 25 percent of new U.S. electricity
capacity additions in 2010, representing USD11 billion in new investments and enough new
capacity to power roughly 1.3 million homes.
The report also notes that U.S. manufacturing of wind turbine components continues to increase,
with domestically produced goods used in U.S. wind power projects reaching approximately 68
percent in 2009-2010, up from 52 percent in 2005-2006.
Another key finding from the report is a 33 percent decline in wind turbine prices since 2008. The
report predicts that current turbine prices and improved turbine performance will drive the cost of
wind energy down further in the coming years.
Fuel cell costs also continue to fall
The 2010 Fuel Cell Technologies Market Report, produced by the Breakthrough Technologies
Institute, provides an overview of trends in the fuel cell industry, including product shipments,
market development, and corporate performance.
The report indicates continued growth in commercial deployments, especially material handling
equipment like forklifts and lift trucks, combined heat and power (CHP), and back?up and
auxiliary power unit (APU) applications.
The report shows that fuel cell costs continue to fall, noting that the high-volume cost of automotive
fuel cells declined to USD51 per kilowatt an 80 percent reduction since 2002.
Commercial sales continue to grow as the number of fuel cell units shipped from North America
quadrupled between 2008 and 2010.
With increasing market penetration, falling costs, and significant improvements in performance and
durability, positive trends in the fuel cells market are expected to continue into 2011 and beyond.
Number of hybrid cars to rise significantly
Earlier this year, DOE and its Oak Ridge National Laboratory released the 2010 Vehicle
Technologies Market Report, which documents trends in fuel efficiency, component suppliers, and
the overall market for alternative fuel vehicles.
The report finds that in the past five years, car manufacturers have produced cars that are more
energy efficient, incorporated innovative lightweight materials, built cleaner-burning engines, and
deployed new hybrid electric systems that reduce the need for traditional petroleum-based fuels.
The report also predicts that the number of hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and plug-in HEVs will
rise significantly with increases in production, particularly in battery manufacturing.
Hybridization and efficiency improvements show the most promise for reducing heavy truck fuel
consumption in the coming years.
Growth of global renewable energy continues
Global investments in green energy up
U.S. solar grew sharply in 2010, still lags Europe
U.S. aims to make PV solar cost competitive by 2020
U.S. renewable energy consumption continues to increase
U.S. on track to double renewable capacity by 2012