In a recently published op-ed, AWEA CEO Tom Kiernan looked to Iowa to see what a future powered by wind might look like, and what he saw was encouraging:
“Today, wind energy supports up to 7,000 well-paying jobs in Iowa and 11 factories that build wind-related parts and materials. For many communities, this offers a second chance after previous industries closed up shop or moved away, like a former Maytag factory that has been re-purposed to build wind turbine blades. Iowa wind has also provided over $12 billion in project investment, creating much-needed financial resources to better schools, fix roads and upgrade emergency services equipment.”
The op-ed comes on the heels of our third quarter market release, which found Iowa set a new record by becoming the first state to generate over one-third of its electricity using wind. And new projects from companies like MidAmerican Energy and Alliant Energy mean the 40 percent threshold isn’t far off.
With 20 gigawatts of new wind capacity currently under construction or in the advanced stages of development across the country, more low-cost clean energy will soon be available to millions of Americans. If they want to know what’s coming their way, they should take a look at what wind’s growth has meant in Iowa:
“As this growth continues, and Americans see the benefits of wind power firsthand, I expect their experiences will mirror Iowa’s. With the highest installed wind capacity by area in the U.S., it’s safe to say Iowans know wind energy as well as anyone. And the more they know, the more they like it: over 90 percent of residents in Iowa’s Third Congressional District have a favorable view of wind power.”