According to the “Year End 2009 Market Report” from the American Wind Energy Association, the U.S. wind industry broke all previous records by installing close to 10,000 MW of new generating capacity in 2009, thanks in large part to Recovery Act incentives. The total installed capacity in the United States is now more than 35,000 MW. In 2009, 38 facilities were brought online, announced, or expanded. For installations by state, see Chart. Texas gained the largest amount of new capacity, bringing it past the 9 GW mark. Iowa now has a total of 3,680 MW installed, putting it into the No. 2 spot. A total of 36 states, including Arizona for the first time, now have utility-scale wind installations — and 14 of them have more than 1,000 MW of wind power capacity.
Source: American Wind Energy Association
Percentage of construction employers that expect to increase hiring in the second quarter, according to the latest hiring survey from Manpower. Conversely, of the construction employer respondents, 14% expect hiring to decrease. Together, this makes for a net employment outlook of +4%.
Source: “Manpower Employment Outlook Survey,” Manpower
Number of home builders, remodelers, suppliers and product manufacturers that have earned the Certified Green Professional (CGP) educational designation since it was introduced by the National Association of Home Builders in 2008.
Source: National Association of Home Builders
Level of builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes in March. This total is two points less than the previous reading. According to the NAHB, this can be attributed to poor weather conditions and distressed property sales, which posed increasing challenges to both builders and buyers.
Source: National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index
Percentage of respondents (working in firms with annual revenues between $201 million and $1 billion) to a recent FMI survey that indicated they are pursuing the same strategy as in years past, despite the fact that 73% of these firms cited a “change-driven threat to either their core assets, activities, or both.”
Source: “Special Report: Contractor Strategy, Emerging from the Perfect Storm,” from FMI Corp.
Job openings rate per 100 employees in construction (seasonally adjusted) in January, as compared to 1.2 in December. Despite the slight decline, this rate is more than double the 0.5% rate in January 2009.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics and Associated General Contractors of America
Number of single-family starts (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in February, a 0.6% decline from the previous month.
Source: U.S. Commerce Department
Percentage increase in the number of new construction starts (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in February, totaling $440.9 billion. According to McGraw-Hill Construction, much of the rise was provided by the public works sector, reflecting strength for both transportation and environmental projects.
Source: McGraw-Hill Construction
Seasonally adjusted amount payroll employment in the construction industry rose in March, marking the first gain since June 2007. Despite the good news, the Associated General Contractors of America cautioned that this trend may not be sustained. “This upturn was shared among all three nonresidential categories — building construction, specialty trade contractors, and heavy and civil engineering construction,” says Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist. “But both nonresidential and residential construction employment remain lower than in January, suggesting some of the pickup may have been a short-term rebound from exceptionally severe weather in February.”
Source: Associated General Contractors of America