Governor Chet Culver Tuesday introduced the group in charge of making Iowa energy independent by 2025. His newly appointed Director for the Office of Energy Independence, Roya Stanley, is to submit a plan by this December.
"No question, that’s a very significant challenge," Stanley says of the 2025 goal, "and particularly with that amount of time." Stanley is a former administrator with the Iowa Department of Human Resources. She will work closely with the 18 member Iowa Power Fund Board. Stanley says she was convinced to move back to Iowa from Colorado, after learning of the state’s energy independence plan.
Stanley says she was also intrigued by Iowa’s commitment to address climate issues and cut greenhouse gases. Fred Hubbell, a retired insurance executive from Des Moines, will serve as chairman of the Power Fund Board. Hubbell says the group faces a challenge of increasing renewable fuels and energy, and improving efficiency, while still contributing to economic development.
"There’s a big balancing act trying to accomplish all those at the same time," Hubbell says, "and there are many other states that allocating more resources or as many as we are, here in this state, to those very same efforts. So, there is competition out there for talent, and there’s money out there competing for those (projects) along with us."
The Power Fund program is designed to invest $100 million toward renewable energy research and development projects in Iowa.