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Wind Power (copy)

Turbines in Duke Energy's Top of the World wind project are pictured in March in Converse County. Wyoming is expected to double its wind output.

Despite the recognizable landscape of turbines standing sentinel between Casper and Laramie, Wyoming still lags far behind the biggest wind states in the country. But that is expected to slowly change.

Wyoming is one of seven states in the country on track to double the amount of energy it can produce from wind power, according to the American Wind Energy Association.

Projects in late-stage development or under construction — such as the Chokecherry Sierra Madre wind project — will multiply wind capacity by a factor of two in the Cowboy State, Arkansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota, Maryland and Massachusetts, the wind association noted in its third quarter report. Some 20,000 new megawatts are under construction across the country and another 17,000 megawatts are in advanced development.

The third quarter report also notes the rise in wind energy contracts from entities like Boston University and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Those power agreements added up to more than 10,000 megawatts of wind energy in 2018 — seven times the amount of wind power installed in Wyoming currently.

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Energy Reporter

Heather Richards writes about energy and the environment. A native of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia, she moved to Wyoming in 2015 to cover natural resources and government in Buffalo. Heather joined the Star Tribune later that year.

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