A new report shows Iowa is the national leader in the percentage of electricity that’s being produced from the wind. Iowa Department of Economic Development director Mike Tramontina says a variety of state tax credits for wind turbines helped play a role in sparking construction.
There are 1200 wind turbines in the state today, mainly in northern Iowa. In addition, Tramontina says the governor and other state officials have worked hard to attract the companies that make wind turbines to start operations here. "We’ve got three of the biggest names in the world in those industries locating in Iowa," Tramontina says. "…We’ve really seen a transformation beginning here and off to a solid footing of turning our old manufacturing base to a new manufacturing base of industries of the future."
A report released today by the American Wind Energy Association shows 5.5 percent of all the electricity generated in Iowa comes from wind turbines. The rate of wind turbine installation in Iowa is also significant. During 2007, only two other states had more wind turbines installed. In addition, the report shows only one other investor-owned utility in the country has more wind turbines than MidAmerican Energy. Several city-owned utility systems and rural electric cooperatives in Iowa were cited as among the nation’s leaders in wind energy production, too. "We’re off to a great start," Tramontina says. "…We’ve got great prospects going forward."
The American Wind Energy Association’s report may be found on-line at www.awea.org .