GE supplying 315 wind turbines

ATLANTA, GA GE Power Systems will supply 315 wind turbines, representing more than 470 MW of power or enough to serve about 144,000 U.S. homes, to FPL Energy for projects across the U.S. that are expected to begin producing electricity later this year.

The wind turbines will be used by FPL Energy, a subsidiary of FPL Group Inc. and the nation’s largest wind energy producer, for new projects near House, New Mexico; Woodward, Oklahoma; Highmore, South Dakota; Kulm and Edgeley, North Dakota; and Waymart, Pennsylvania.

“These latest orders further illustrate the rapidly growing interest in wind power, as power producers increasingly are seeking clean, renewable sources of energy,” said Steve Zwolinski, president of GE Wind Energy, a unit of GE Power Systems. “With wind power’s competitive economics, high reliability and environmental benefits, it is becoming widely recognized as a viable energy solution.”

The FPL Energy projects will utilize GE’s 1.5-megawatt machine, the largest wind turbine manufactured in the U.S. To date, more than 1,300 of these units have been installed worldwide, making this machine one of the most widely used megawatt class wind turbines in the world.

“Having a supplier of wind turbines that can meet our aggressive construction and installation schedule is critical to the success of our wind development activities,” said Jim Robo, president of FPL Energy. “We’re pleased to work with a company that shares our commitment to quality, service and reliability.”

FPL Energy is the nation’s leader in wind energy with 30 wind facilities in operation in 10 states. Wind power represents approximately 24% of the company’s portfolio, with more than 80% being fueled by renewable or clean-burning sources including natural gas, solar, nuclear, hydro and wind.

With an average growth rate in annual installations of 35.7% over the last five years, wind power is the fastest growing segment of the global energy industry. According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), a record 6,868 megawatts of new wind capacity were installed worldwide in 2002, driving total wind power installation to over 31,000 megawatts or enough power for about 7.5 million American homes.

GE Wind Energy designs and manufactures wind turbines with rated outputs of between 900 and 3,600 kilowatts, and offers support services ranging from project development assistance to operation and maintenance. GE Wind Energy employs more than 1,500 people worldwide, with manufacturing facilities in Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and the U.S.

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