The DoE recently released its Monthly Energy Review for November, and its preliminary numbers showed wind surpassing 2% of total production. However, total output from wind turbines dropped slightly from the previous month, going from 5.802 billion kWh in October to 5.678 billion kWh in November. On a year-over-year basis, it increased 25% from 4.538 billion kWh in November 2008.
The main reason wind hit 2.01% in November was a reduction in generation from all sources, with total electricity demand coming in at just 283 billion kWh, down nearly 10% year-over-year from 309 billion in November 2008. This was a sharper drop than we saw in October, when year-over-year demand fell 4%, and wind hit its previous monthly record of 1.89% of total generation. For the first 11 months of 2009, wind produced 1.66% of total U.S. Electricity, up from 1.29% for all of calendar 2008.
Spring is often the peak for wind, with March and April of last year both surpassing 6.5 billion kWh of wind-produced electricity. With the additional capacity in place this year, lower overall demand, and limited production from peaking combined cycle plants, it is possible wind could easily shoot past 2.5% for March or April of this year, before settling into typical summer lull.
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