Why isn't the turbine in my backyard included in the U.S. Wind Turbine Database?

The U.S. Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) is designed to be a comprehensive source of information for utility-scale wind turbines in the United States; residential-scale turbines are excluded. We have removed turbines known to be residential scale and have excluded turbines that are both less than 65 kW in rated capacity and less than 30 meters in total height. 

We are not aware of a comprehensive, publicly-available data source of residential-scale turbines. 

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Can wind turbines harm wildlife?

A key challenge facing the wind industry is the potential for turbines to adversely affect wild animals both directly, via collisions, as well as indirectly due to noise pollution, habitat loss, and reduced survival or reproduction. Among the most impacted wildlife are birds and bats, which by eating destructive insects provide billions of dollars...

How many wind turbines are installed in the U.S. each year?

The number of turbines installed in the U.S. each year varies based on a number of factors, but on average 3,000 turbines have been built in the U.S. each year since 2005. Learn more: Wind Energy U.S. Wind Turbine Database

How much wind energy does it take to power an average home?

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration , the average U.S. home uses 867 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per month. The mean turbine capacity in the U.S. Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) is 1.67 megawatts (MW). At a 33% capacity factor, that average turbine would generate over 402,000 kWh per month - enough for over 460 average U.S. homes. To...

Is there an international wind turbine database available?

No. To our knowledge, the U.S. Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) is unique. Other datasets might be available from other countries on an ad hoc basis, but we are not aware of any central repository of those data. For general information and statistics on international wind projects, see thewindpower.net .

How many turbines are contained in the U.S. Wind Turbine Database?

As of January 2019, the U.S. Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) contains more than 58,000 turbines. These turbines have all been constructed since 1980 in approximately 1,500 wind power projects spanning at least 43 states (plus Puerto Rico and Guam).

Why is it important to know the locations of wind turbines?

No publicly-available, national database of wind turbines existed prior to the creation of the USGS Windfarm mapper, which was replaced with the U.S. Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) in 2018. Knowing the location of individual turbines and their technical specifications creates new opportunities for research and improved siting and is important...
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Date published: May 16, 2018

Mapping the Nation's Wind Turbines

There are more than 57,000 wind turbines across the United States, and a new tool allows you to get up close and personal with each one!

Date published: April 19, 2018

U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Department of Energy Release Online Public Dataset and Viewer of U.S. Wind Turbine Locations and Characteristics

Today, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in partnership with DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the American Wind Energy Association, released the United States Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) and the USWTDB Viewer to access this new public dataset.

Date published: March 9, 2018

Raptor Interactions with Wind Energy: Case Studies from Around the World

Attempts to measure and mitigate the effects of wind turbines on wildlife have been an integral part of wind energy development.

Date published: January 10, 2017

Advancing Wind Energy and Avoiding Wildlife Conflicts

Our Nation works to advance renewable energy and to avoid conflicts with and conserve wildlife.

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Image of wind turbine towering over trees
December 31, 2018

Wind turbine towering over trees

A wind turbine rising above Oʻahu trees forms part of a wind energy installation where USGS bat research is taking place.

Dilapidated windmill over groundwater well in Utah's West Desert.
February 7, 2017

Windmill Well

Dilapidated windmill over well in West Desert, Utah.

A lone wind turbine in a corn field in Wyoming.
December 31, 2014

A lone wind turbine.

This is an image of a wind turbine in a corn field taken in Wyoming in the summer of 2014.

person on a gravel road along side a row of wind turbines
May 18, 2014

Data collection at wind energy facility

A field scientist collecting fatality data at a wind energy facility.

Image: Small-scale Commercial Windmill
April 17, 2009

Small-scale Commercial Windmill

USGS researchers used a small-scale commercial windmill as an essential part of its new device to measure snowfall in remote areas.

Image: Wind Turbines on a Farm
July 1, 2008

Wind Turbines on a Farm

Scientists have found that wind turbines are causing fatalities of certain species of migratory insect-eating bats, although a March 2011 study in Science suggests that solutions to reduce the impacts of wind turbines on bats may be possible.

West Desert Windmill on bluebird day
November 30, 2000

West Desert Windmill