Windpower History

  • Timeline

    • From ancient times until the late 1800s wind turbines were used for - Milling and Irrigation.
    • In 1888 Charles Brush powered his Cleveland estate with the first known electrical windmill, the "Dynamo".
    • In the 1920s - 1960s off grid wind powered electricity production was widespread with many small turbine manufacturers supplying the market. The rural Electrification Act (REA) of 1936 lead to the creation of the electric grid, bringing reliable power to rural areas and in effect killing the small wind industry.
    • In the 1980s - the first large scale wind farms were launched.
    • In the 1990s - Small/distributed wind generation re-entered market.
  • Today

    • 20% of electricity production in Denmark is from wind power.
    • Many European countries produce more than 10% of their electricity from wind power.
    • 1.5% of electricity production worldwide is generated by wind power.
    • Less than .5% of electricity produced in the US today is from wind power.
    • The US Department Of Energy goal is for wind power to comprise 6% of electricity generated in the US and 20% by 2030.