The use of wind power is continuing to grow in the United States, as new wind power projects in Oklahoma and Oregon will add another 92 mW of generating capacity by year's end.

Early in June, FPL Energy doubled the planned size of its Oklahoma Wind Energy Center to 102 mW. All the energy from the project, now under construction near Woodward, will be sold to Oklahoma Gas and Electric. Despite the expanded scope, FPL Energy still intends to complete the project by year's end.

In Oregon, a 41-mW wind plant will soon be built west of Milton-Freewater, just south of the Washington border in the northeast part of the state. The Eurus Combine Hills I wind facility will consist of 41 one-mW wind turbines manufactured by Mitsubishi. Construction should be underway by mid-July and the project should be complete by year-end. PacifiCorp will buy the power from the wind plant for sale to its Pacific Power and Utah Power customers.

The project is the first foray into large-scale wind power for the Energy Trust of Oregon, which administers a fund to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy development in the state. The fund, generated by a 3% charge on all power sold within the state, is contributing US$3.8 million toward the construction of the new wind facility.

PacifiCorp appears to have a growing market for its wind power, if Moab, Utah, is any indication. Five percent of Moab's citizens have signed up for PacifiCorp's Blue Sky wind power program, making it the first city to earn the designation as a Blue Sky community. The city is now aiming to draw on renewable energy for 3% of its energy in order to earn recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Partner Program.