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Content displaying: O&M

Land-Based Wind

Operation and Maintenance (O&M) Costs

Definition: Operations and maintenance (O&M) costs depend on capacity and represent the annual fixed expenditures required to operate and maintain a wind plant, including items noted in the table above.

Base Year: The O&M of $44/kW-yr in the Base Year is estimated in the 2018 Cost of Wind Energy Review (Stehly et al., 2019); no variation of FOM with wind speed class (or wind speed) is assumed. The following chart shows sample historical data for reference.

Source: Wiser and Bolinger (2019)

Future Years: Future FOM is assumed to decline by approximately 25% by 2050 in the Moderate case and 45% in the Advanced case. These values are informed by recent benchmarking work for wind power operating costs in the United States (Wiser et al., 2019). ATB does not consider differences in regional FOM costs associated with labor, materials or differences in O&M strategies—for example, operating the wind plant to maximize tax credits by deferring maintenance activities.

Use the following table to view the components of O&M.


The following references are specific to this page; for all references in this ATB, see References.

Stehly, Tyler, Beiter, Philipp, Heimiller, Donna, & Scott, George. (2019). 2018 Cost of Wind Energy Review. (No. NREL/TP-5000-74598). National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Wiser, Ryan, & Bolinger, Mark. (2019). 2018 Wind Technologies Market Report. (No. DOE/GO-102019-5191). Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Wiser, Ryan, Bolinger, Mark, & Lantz, Eric. (2019). Assessing Wind Power Operating Costs in the United States: Results from a Survey of Wind Industry Experts. Renewable Energy Focus.

Developed with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.