AWEA, the national trade organization for the wind industry, said that as of the end of 2009 the U.S. installed over 10,000 megawatts worth of wind turbines, enough wind power capacity to provide 2.4 million homes with electricity. (Interestingly, AWEA notes alongside that statistic that three large nuclear power plants could generate the same amount of electricity.)
The increased wind capacity brings the U.S. total to 35,000 megawatts. While that may sound like a lot, it's only enough to power 9.7 million homes annually.
A modest number of U.S. homeowners and small businesses also showed interest in personal wind energy. Small wind, which the AWEA categorizes as those turbines with a maximum capacity of 100kW, grew 15 percent in 2009 with about 20 megawatts of generating capacity installed in the U.S.
But despite increased interest in wind on land, the U.S. still has no major offshore wind capacity to speak of, according to AWEA. The organization noted that there are seven potential projects in permitting and planning stages awaiting approval from federal and state authorities, as well as regulators.