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North Dakota is ranked in the top 10 for greatest wind capacity. Wind towers can be found across the state producing electricity.

Over the last few years many of the region’s utilities completed construction of wind facilities to comply either with renewable portfolio standards in states surrounding North Dakota or to meet internal policies related to diverse energy portfolio standards. During the last year, however, the wind industry in North Dakota found itself in a state of transition. Driven in part by the economic slowdown caused by the 2008 recession and the resulting decrease in demand for electricity, the construction of new facilities also slowed down, with several projects stalled.

Adding to the challenges for the industry was the failure of Congress to extend the production tax credit beyond December 2012. In spite of these issues, the capacity of the wind industry grew during the last year.

Highlights include:

  • Since 2010, the North Dakota Public Service Commission has approved wind projects with total investments estimated at $930 million.
  • In the last two years, installed wind capacity in the state has grown by over 250 megawatts with an additional 210 megawatts under construction in early 2012.
  • North Dakota ranked tenth in the nation in capacity in 2012. The North Dakota Public Service Commission has permitted 2,900 megawatts of wind generation.
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