The latest world's largest wind project has been initiated (as opposed to "only" announced) at Tehachapi Pass in California. Terra-Gen Power and the Alta Wind Energy Center will install 300 turbines at a cost of $1.2 billion...pending action by Congress.
Aside from hydroelectric power (which will not expand much anymore), WIND and GEOTHERMAL POWER ARE THE ONLY RENEWABLES COMPETITIVE WITH COAL AND NUCLEAR ELECTRICITY. Solar photovoltaics reman two to three times those costs, and solar thermal, maybe about double.
Well, all the above reads well. The reality is that wind power is in the doldrums, for the American Wind Energy Association reports that 1239 MW of wind systems were installed in the first half of the year, and this is 71% below that of 2009. The prognosis for next year is worse, as there is huge uncertainty on Congressional policy for incentives, plus the continuing economic downturn, which seems not to be improving much.
Governments the world over provided around $45 billion to renewable energy technologies in 2009. Terrific? Well, no. Fossil fuel subsidies got $557 billion in 2008, reported the International Energy Agency. (You might want to click on Green Scissors to gain some details on misplaced priorities, courtesy of Madeleine Austin.)