In early 2009, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) and industry experts predicted that the year would see a drop in the amount of wind capacity installed in the United States. The continuing recession, lack of tax credit financing and a reduction in demand for energy were expected to cause a drop in installations by as much as 50% from 2008 levels. However, yesterday after the numbers were tallied, it turned out to be another record breaking year for the U.S. wind energy industry with nearly 10,000 megawatts (MW) put in the ground.

The quick action on releasing ARRA cash grants for wind projects in the middle of last summer in particular helped to reverse what AWEA said was a tough situation for the industry. Wind developers took advantage of much of the $2 billion in grants that were released in order to build out 44 wind projects in 22 states, representing 3,200 MW of installed capacity.