Video: One reason Texas became the No. 1 state in wind energy

Photo in Texas by AWEA
Video: One reason Texas became the No. 1 state in wind energy

A new video that is part of AWEA’s #InTheirOwnWords series illustrates the success of the Competitive Renewable Energy Zones (CREZ) that Texas put in place to bring energy from wind-rich areas of Texas to population centers with high demand.

Unfortunately, Texas is currently considering a bill that could roll back this progress. As Susan Sloan, the Vice President of State Policy at AWEA, wrote at the San Antonio Express-News:

Senate Bill 931 would repeal the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard, or RPS, and eliminate the still-not-complete Competitive Renewable Energy Zones, or CREZ, program, which built transmission lines that helped bring energy from wind-rich areas in Texas to population centers. In effect, the bill is breaking a deal that was struck to put long-term, cost-effective infrastructure in place.

CREZ transmission lines to West Texas have already brought cleaner, cheaper power to cities. They allow not only wind but solar, gas and other types of generation to reach communities that need power. But some CREZ lines in the wind-rich Panhandle have not been completed. Companies developing wind resources in the Panhandle put up significant financial commitments to signal that there would be wind projects using those lines.

Creating policy uncertainty for companies could deter future investments in the state.

To tell the Texas legislature that they should oppose this bill, go to Power of Wind here.


Shauna Theel is the Deputy Director of Digital Media at the American Wind Energy Association. She oversees AWEA's digital media content and strategy, ensuring that the message of clean, affordable, and American wind power is heard loud and clear across media platforms. Prior to joining AWEA, she worked at the watchdog group Media Matters for America for four years. As the Climate and Energy Program Director at Media Matters, she oversaw the group's rapid response communications, long-term research analyses, and outreach efforts related to energy and environmental policy. In this role, she served as the public face of the team, giving interviews to press outlets, and giving presentations everywhere from Capitol Hill to the National Press Club. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in Political Science.

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