by David Fessler, Advisory Panelist, Investment U
The World’s Largest “Air” Force…
Mention “Air Force One” to someone here in the U.S. and visions of a Boeing 747-400 with the Presidential Seal on the side quickly come to mind.
But now there’s another new meaning associated with the phrase, and it’s good news for the guy that gets to ride in the jet.
In 2008 America became the global force in wind-generated electricity. President Obama can take heart in the fact that his pledge to cut imports of foreign oil is already underway, at least in the wind power arena.
According to the Global Wind Energy Council, last year America’s installed capacity of wind generator capacity totaled 25 gigawatts, edging out Germany, the previous leader.
The U.S. added 8.4 gigawatts of capacity in 2008 alone, more than any other country. Global capacity grew at 29% last year to a total of 120 gigawatts. Even with all this torrid growth, wind power provides a paltry 1% to the global energy supply, leaving lots of room for growth.
Most folks think the world’s desire to “Go Green” is the reason wind Power is gaining so much popularity and wind farms are popping up all over the place, like daffodils in the spring.
But they would be wrong. The real reason is simple: it’s the old concept of supply and demand. And without a huge ramp up in supply of alternative, clean (green) sources of energy like wind and solar provide, the world will be facing a huge energy gap in as little as fifteen years.
It stands to benefit companies like Americas Wind Energy Corporation (Nasdaq: AWNE), a large manufacturer and distributor of wind turbines to wind farm developers in North America.
The biggest roadblock to another banner year for wind this year is the clogged credit markets. Wind farms require lots of capital to construct, but without a properly functioning credit market, these big machines will stall, regardless of how hard the alternative energy winds are blowing.