November 1 (Renewables Now) - US utility and non-utility companies sealed 1,379 MW of long-term wind power purchase agreements (PPAs) in the third quarter, shows a new report by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).
Non-utility corporate buyers were responsible for 64% of the overall demand in the sector, contracting 888 MW of wind power capacity in the three months. This total includes off-take deals from two first-time buyers -- apparel retailer Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS), which in September announced a virtual PPA with Enel SpA (BIT:ENEL) for a 90-MW portion of a new wind park in North Dakota, and Sprint Corp (NYSE:S). The telecommunications major agreed to buy power from a 173.3-MW portion of a wind project in Texas, owned by utility Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK).
The utility segment, meanwhile, saw 311 MW of new wind contracts. Additionally, utility companies, including Dominion Energy Inc (NYSE:D), American Electric Power (NYSE:AEP) and DTE Energy (NYSE:DTE), announced plans to add 4,198 MW of wind power capacity under direct ownership. Some 2,640 MW of this total will come from offshore wind.
Cumulatively, utility and non-utility purchases of wind power capacity since the start of this year amount to 6,179 MW.
According to AWEA’s US Wind Industry Third Quarter 2019 Market Report, the US commissioned 1,927 MW of new wind power generation capacity in the third quarter of 2019, which brought the country’s cumulative installed capacity to 100,125 MW at the end of September. The newly-announced construction and advanced development projects in the three months totalled 10,090 MW, marking a new record.