At a time when another record year of wind power installations is expected, a major developer in North America expects that the market will continue to grow with new business focused outside of the United States. Mike Garland, chief executive of Pattern Energy said, “There are still opportunities for expansion beyond the U.S. in Canada and even newer markets like Colombia and Chile,” in an interview with Dow Jones. Pattern Energy is a developer in wind power projects that is backed by Riverstone Holdings.
Garland doesn’t expect to see a significant boom in wind power purchases over the next few years, but requests to upgrade current wind power developments and a steady demand for new projects should mean constant business for companies in wind power. Over the course of the next four years, he expects that his firm might be involved in the development of new projects that could total up to 1 gigawatt of wind energy.
“The growth of the economy is very good,” Garland said. “And as the economy grows, new [project] demand will be coming out and old demands [for projects] will be coming back.”
New growth in wind power demand is expected to come from outside of the U.S., primarily. Pattern Energy has work and developments in Canada that will bring business for the next two to three years. While the market in the U.S. is predicted to stay flat, around 4 to 5 gigawatts of new wind energy are expected to be added annually.
Garland expects that Pattern Energy will turn to investors for a source of new capital in the next year or two. The company closed an investment totaling $800 million in 2010 with Riverstone Holdings. Riverstone is a private equity firm focused in energy and power. The firm was co-founded in 2000 by Pierre F. Lapeyre and David Leuschen and Riverstone has committed over $19 billion globally to date.