Top 10 wind power states and where Texas ranks

October 16, 2020   By Arthur Murray

Top 10 wind power states and where Texas ranks

(To our readers: Today we resume our examination of where Texas ranks among other states in terms of generating power from some of the major sources. This time, we examine solar power.)

Texas is a giant when it comes to wind power. It leads the country – by far – in the generation of electricity through wind. It also leads the nation, again by far, in electricity generation in general.

The latest statistics from the U.S. Energy Information Administration show that Texas generated 7,326 thousand megawatt hours of electricity – and that’s really how EIA measures energy generation – from wind in July. That’s nearly four times as much as No. 2 Oklahoma and a third of the total U.S. wind energy output.

Year-to-date, Texas has generated 56,648 thousand megawatts hours of electricity through wind, about 20 percent of its total electricity generation. That total is more than three times as much as any other state.

Which states are close to Texas? Here are the top 10 wind producers year-to-date, production in thousand megawatt hours, and the percentage of solar power in the total generation of electricity so far this year:

State YTD wind generation YTD all generation % from wind
Texas 56,648 273,337 20.7
Iowa 17,975 33,896 53.0
Oklahoma 17,686 49,426 35.8
Kansas 13,992 31,168 44.9
California 9,344 109,048 8.6
Illinois 9,310 98,710 9.4
North Dakota 7,534 24,533 30.7
Colorado 7,057 31,270 22.6
Minnesota 6,940 31,224 22.2
Oregon 5,375 38,569 13.9

Interestingly, while Texas generates by far the most electricity from wind, it is only 11th when it comes to the percentage of total generation that can be attributed to wind. Iowa has gotten more than 50 percent of its electricity from wind so far. Four other states have gotten more than 30 percent of their power that way.

Here are the top 10 states with that get the largest percentage of their electricity from wind:

State % from wind State % from wind
Iowa 53.0 Maine 23.9
Kansas 44.9 New Mexico 22.6
Oklahoma 35.8 Colorado 22.6
South Dakota 33.9 Nebraska 22.4
North Dakota 30.7 Minnesota 22.2

What about Texas wind power in 2019?

In 2019, Texas again generated the most electricity from wind of any other state – 84,429 thousand megawatt hours. That was more than the next three states combined.

Here are the top 10 states in producing electricity wind, their generation for the year, and the percentage of wind power compared with the total amount of electricity made during 2019:

State 2019 wind generation 2019 total generation % from wind
Texas 84,429 482,355 17.5
Oklahoma 28,883 83,482 34.6
Iowa 26,558 63,268 42.0
Kansas 21,501 51,875 41.4
California 14,970 205,033 7.3
Illinois 13,831 181,480 7.6
Minnesota 11,040 57,875 19.1
Colorado 10,926 56,191 19.4
North Dakota 10,754 40,188 26.8
Washington 7,724 105,719 7.3

We mentioned that Texas is the largest energy producer in the U.S., so the overall percentage of wind power in its generation for the year was not as high as you suspect – 17.5 percent. That placed it 12th among states, slightly behind Vermont.

Here are the states that got the highest percentage of their electricity from wind:

State % of electricity from wind State % of electricity from wind
Iowa 42.0 Maine 23.8
Kansas 41.4 Nebraska 19.9
Oklahoma 34.6 New Mexico 19.5
North Dakota 26.8 Colorado 19.4
South Dakota 23.9 Minnesota 19.1

Bottom line: When it comes to wind, Texas is king and is likely to remain in that position for some time.

Interested in previous articles in the series? Solar.

Arthur Murray is a veteran energy writer whose articles have appeared on Zillow.com, Business.com, Nasdaq.com, and USNews.com, among others. You may reach him at amurray@redventures.com.