US Solar Will Eclipse Wind in 2013, Says Duke Energy
By Ehren Goossens
The U.S. will install more solar power in 2013 than wind energy for the first time as wind projects slump and cheap panels spur demand for photovoltaic systems, according to the head of Duke Energy Corp. (DUK)’s renewable- energy development unit.
The U.S. may install 3 gigawatts to 4 gigawatts of wind turbines this year, and solar installations will probably exceed that, said Gregory Wolf, president of Duke Energy Renewables.
U.S. wind projects have come to a near-standstill this year after the scheduled Dec. 31 expiration of a federal tax credit. Wolf anticipates more solar projects going into operation in 2013 than wind farms after panel prices fell more than 60 percent in the last two years.
“I would expect a lot of momentum still on solar,” Wolf said in an interview yesterday.
“We really ramped up our solar in 2010,” said Wolf. “Today most of the projects are half or less of the cost now than then.” Duke Renewables’ portfolio of renewable-energy projects exceeds 1.7 gigawatts.
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