Environmental group recognizes Iowa’s renewable energy efforts

(Source: Environmental Law & Policy Center)
While Iowa is a national leader in wind energy production, there is still room for growth in the solar sector. (Source: Environmental Law & Policy Center)

Nick Fetty | March 6, 2015

The Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC) released a report Thursday recognizing Iowa for strides made in the renewable energy sector.

The 16-page report highlighted 75 Iowa companies engaged in the wind industry supply chain and which have created approximately 4,000 jobs in the state. In addition, Iowa is now home to seven international wind manufacturing companies. The report also recognized 47 solar companies which provide roughly 680 Iowa jobs. Four factors were outlined that have contributed to Iowa’s strong renewable energy sector including: (1) tax incentives, (2) strong wind resources, (3) an excellent multi-modal transportation system, and (4) educational institutions and a skilled workforce. Despite the overall positive tone of the report, it also acknowledged that “Iowa still has room for growth in the industry.”

Unrelated to the ELPC report, prominent groups and leaders in the state’s agriculture sector released an open letter on Wednesday calling for speakers and policymakers at the inaugural Iowa Ag Summit to support renewable energy in the Hawkeye State.

“This ability to provide homegrown energy reduces our dependency on foreign fuels, improves the economy and enhances our national security,” the letter stated. “Iowa’s success story serves as an example for what the rest of the nation can achieve.”

The event – which takes place on Saturday – is expected to be attended by several 2016 presidential hopefuls including Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, and Scott Walker.

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