This chapter explores worldwide policies and development of wind energy over the next several decades. It first examines the global thrust to develop renewable energy sources. The chapter also examines how and why wind energy is a major component of these renewable energy development initiatives by considering how the technology, national policies, and public opinion contribute to meet growing worldwide electric demand. Global wind statistics for 2012 compiled by the Global Wind Energy Council show that Europe, Asia, and North America have far more installed wind power capacity than other regions of the world. The chapter discusses policies driving wind energy development in these regions, and presents additional information for an important nation or state in the region, to include electric consumption data, population, quality of life (QOL) data, wind energy growth rates, and policies in place that support the development of wind energy and renewable power.
This is a book chapter in Wind Energy Essentials: Societal, Economic, and Environmental Impacts.