Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Advocates say Iowa utility’s plan doesn’t go far enough on efficiency
By Karen Uhlenhuth
An Iowa utility with plans to build a new natural gas-fired power plant is also cutting back on efficiency efforts, in what advocates say is a case of misplaced priorities.
Several organizations have critiqued a five-year energy efficiency plan filed in November by Interstate Power and Light (IPL), one of three investor-owned utilities serving the state. Every five years, Iowa’s large power companies are required to submit a plan to state regulators for reducing energy consumption over the next five years.
Interstate’s latest proposal, to take effect on Jan. 1, left some of the state’s efficiency advocates underwhelmed.
“They’re leaving a lot of energy efficiency that is achievable on the table,” said Josh Mandelbaum, a Des Moines-based staff attorney for the Environmental Law & Policy Center. The center, together with the Iowa Environmental Council and the Iowa Policy Project, last month filed a response to Interstate’s plan.
All three groups are members of RE-AMP, which also publishes Midwest Energy News.
Interstate’s overall goal – to reduce retail sales of electricity by 1.1 percent annually from 2014 through 2018 – would be a slight reduction from the 1.3 percent average annual reduction it achieved from 2009-2012. Iowa law allows utilities to pass efficiency costs on to ratepayers; Interstate proposes cutting those reimbursements from $73.1 million in 2012 to $62.6 million in 2014.
Interstate’s goal falls far short of reductions deemed feasible by a recent study commissioned by the state’s three large utilities. The study, done in 2012 by The Cadmus Group, a consulting firm, estimated that given optimal conditions and aggressive efforts by Interstate, it could cut retail electricity sales by just over 2 percent each of the next five years, or about twice Interstate’s goal.
“We don’t see any good reason why they’re not going after more (efficiency)” said Nathaniel Baer, energy program director for the Iowa Environmental Council. “If they’re leaving the most economical and cleanest source of power, then they’re going after sources that are more costly and more polluting.”
Running out of opportunities to save?
Interstate intends to build a 600-megawatt natural gas-fired power plant near Marshalltown, to go into operation in 2017. Baer and Mandelbaum challenge the company’s pursuit of another plant at the same time that, in their view, Interstate isn’t working hard enough to meet future demand through energy efficiency.
“I think the company is focused on that rate of return (from building and operating a new power plant) and not on the environment or the Iowa economy,” Baer said.
Interstate spokesman Justin Foss, however, disputes that characterization.
“Our energy resources plan incorporates efficiency and diversifying our energy portfolio,” he said. “It isn’t either/or.”
The Council contends that several strategies could significantly boost energy savings among Interstate’s customers.
The “key,” according to Baer, is increasing the subsidy to customers who invest in efficiency upgrades such as more-efficient light bulbs and appliances. Currently, he said, Interstate’s subsidies vary, but might average in the neighborhood of 50 percent of the extra up-front cost of efficient products. The Cadmus study suggests that utilities pay 100 percent of those costs.
Although it’s not really clear to what extent Interstate’s customers already have made efficiency upgrades, Baer said there likely are many customers who haven’t moved to more efficient products. Bigger incentives might get them on board, he said, as well as possibly encouraging earlier adopters to embrace more recent or upcoming technological advances.
Foss, however, said further incentives likely would be wasteful and redundant. The greatest efficiencies have been wrung out of the system already, and additional efficiencies would provide lesser results for a greater cost.
In the proposal it filed with the state’s utility regulator, Interstate said, “IPL must dedicate ever greater resources to capturing deeper energy savings from harder-to-reach customer segments and later adopters.”
For example, Foss said, “if you bought a furnace two years ago, and you went from 80 to 95 percent efficiency, and now there’s a furnace out there that’s 97 percent efficient, are you going to replace your two-year-old furnace?
And if you bought compact fluorescent bulbs a year ago, will you – and should you – throw them out now in favor of more-efficient LED bulbs?
“That’s the question people have to ask themselves,” Foss said.
‘Get all savings possible’
Mandelbaum termed Foss’ argument mostly “an excuse” for Interstate’s failure to more aggressively pursue efficiency strategies.
Increased efficiency doesn’t rely only on those customers who’ve already upgraded, said Andy Johnson, executive director of the Winneshiek Energy District, a Decorah, Iowa-based non-profit that promotes energy sustainability.
More customers would move towards efficiency if it were, in a manner of speaking, delivered to their door, Johnson said. In his response to Interstate’s plan, Johnson said utilities don’t provide enough technical assistance to customers. In general, he said, utilities provide audits, reports that typically end up on a high shelf to gather dust.
If utility customers could consult with an energy planner from their community, who would not only assess their current efficiency needs, but also nudge them until they make the improvements, efficiency would take a great leap forward, according to Johnson.
Winneshiek has experimented with what Johnson terms “energy planning,” with the result that 90 percent of 50 businesses that received an energy audit went on to make at least one of the recommended efficiency improvements.
Johnson and other critics say Interstate could achieve more efficiency with a greater focus on industrial and commercial customers. Baer said Interstate should, for example, nudge industries towards construction of combined heat and power plants, which can dramatically improve efficiency by making use of waste heat.
Data centers in particular are ripe for efficiency improvements, critics said. Iowa is attracting a growing number of data centers – most recently Facebook, as well as those of other large institutions such as universities and hospitals.
“It’s a fast-growing energy-use sector,” said Baer. “We think they need to focus on those and get all savings possible.”
The potential is great, said Mandelbaum, given that, per square foot, data centers typically use about 100 times as much energy as more typical offices.
He and Baer also take issue with Interstate’s proposed termination of an incentive for customers who install renewables on-site, which can help offset demand. Interstate launched a pilot project in 2008, then instituted it statewide in August 2011. The company says the program has gotten very few takers, and hasn’t proven cost-effective.
However, Mandelbaum points out that in 2012, the program paid rebates to 57 customers, and that in the first three months of 2013, 32 customers qualified for rebates. At that rate, he said, the response in 2013 would more than double that of 2012.
“That to me is a sign that the program is working,” he said.
The bottom line, Mandelbaum said, is that efficiency planning calls for expansive thinking. The fact that the plan reaches five years into the future, “makes it that much more important that you be aggressive and forward-thinking.”
Story available online at http://www.midwestenergynews.com/2013/05/07/advocates-say-iowa-utilitys-plan-doesnt-go-far-enough-on-efficiency/
Monday, March 25, 2013
Wind Power Is Here to Stay
By George C. Ford
With the recent layoff of 40 employees at Acciona Windpower in West Branch and larger furloughs last fall at Siemens Energy, Trinity Towers and other Iowa wind turbine component plants, the long-term viability of the industry has been questioned.
But analysts who follow the electric power industry are quick to affirm the future of wind power as a long-term source of renewable energy.
“Wind is not going anywhere,” said Shane Mullins, vice president of product development for the power industry at research firm Industrial Info Resources in Sugar Land, Texas. “Many wind turbine manufacturers did not receive any orders after June of last year as developers waited to see if Congress would extend the production tax credit before it expired on Dec. 31. With the extension of the PTC on Jan. 3, wind turbine construction projects that were put on hold last year are going to be dusted off.
“Between now and the middle of this year, we believe there are going to be a lot of projects come off hold and be back on active status.”
The PTC, created in 1992, provides a 2.2-cent-per-kilowatt-hour benefit for the first 10 years of a wind turbine’s operation. That has enabled wind to compete with coal, natural gas and nuclear power plants.
Losses and gains
Wind power installations have declined between 73 percent and 93 percent in the years after previous expirations of the PTC.
Congress has restored the tax credit after previous expirations, but not before widespread industry layoffs.
Even with the PTC extended to Dec. 31, 2013, Mullins expects only 3 gigawatts to 4 gigawatts of new wind power likely will enter commercial operation by the end of 2013, compared with about 12 gigawatts that entered service in 2012.
He said many developers and utilities raced to get turbines installed and in service before Dec. 31, which was required to take advantage of the PTC.
“A lot of the projects that came online last year had started construction in 2011,” Mullins said. “Many developers were pulling construction projects out of 2013 to start construction by midyear in 2012.”
Under the latest PTC extension, wind turbine projects need only be physically started by Dec. 31, 2013. Howard Leaner, executive director of the Chicago-based Environmental Law & Policy Center, said that has the potential to extend new wind farm construction.
“With wind turbine efficiency increasing and with wind having the inherent advantage of zero fuel cost, we see active wind turbine development through the end of 2013 and possibly into 2014 or 2015,” Learner said. “Natural gas prices have been low over the last couple of years, and that’s a good thing for our economy, but who knows what natural gas prices will be in two years, five years or 10 years?”
Learner said wind power can provide a long-term hedge against the volatility of other fuel prices. The nuclear power industry, for example, is facing the potential for costly retrofits in the wake of the Fukushima disaster.
“The cost of coal is higher than natural gas right now, and natural gas prices are starting to move up,” Learner said. “Most smart utility managers are adopting a portfolio approach that includes zero-fuel-cost wind power.”
Demand, jobs growing
Mullins said demand for wind energy is going to grow because of increases in state-mandated renewable energy portfolio standards. He expects about 4 gigawatts per year of required utility purchases of renewable energy over the next decade.
“That’s all been met by utilities until you get to the 2015 or 2016 time frame,” Mullins said. “That’s when purchase power agreements are going to start coming out for more wind power.
“Right now, it’s believed this will be the last extension of the PTC for wind. With natural gas prices expected to rise in 2016 and the increased demand for renewable energy kicking in, wind will be able to compete without the need for the PTC.”
At its peak, the wind power industry was responsible for supporting 7,000 jobs in Iowa. Many of those positions were part of a supply chain of more than 50 manufacturers in many large and small communities across the state.
Some wind turbine manufacturers have entered the aftermarket for wind maintenance and repair as a revenue source to get them through a lean period for new turbine orders. David Bennett, energy production and distribution technology instructor at Kirkwood Community College, said the job market is strong for wind energy technicians.
“I have 3,500 job openings posted on my board right now,” Bennett said. “All you have to do is look and be willing to travel. Most of them are not here in Iowa, where there’s only two projects hiring at the present time.
“The first thing that I tell my students is get their passport ready and pack their bags. There are wind energy technician jobs in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Portugal, South America and Spain.”
The average annual salary for a wind turbine technician is generally from $35,000 to $43,000, depending on qualifications and experience, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
With Iowa getting the largest portion of its electricity from wind than any state, 24 percent, the state could be a net exporter of wind-generated power if the necessary power grid infrastructure existed, said Debi Durham, director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority.
“While there are companies like Clean Line Energy Partners stepping in to address that, it takes time to secure (property) easements and it will require time to build transmission lines,” Durham said. “It’s not going to happen overnight.
“We have the retirement of the old coal-fired coal plants and stuff coming out of Washington about emissions reductions, but the infrastructure is just not there for all these clean and renewable energy alternatives. Until that occurs, we’re not likely to see robust growth for wind or other alternative energy platforms.”
Durham said the federal government, which is issuing the mandates, needs to have a national energy policy.
“We also need to know how this energy infrastructure is going to be built,” Durham said. “We have to look at incentives so the private sector will step in and do some of this from a return on investment.”
Available at: http://thegazette.com/2013/03/24/wind-power-here-to-stay-in-iowa/
Thursday, March 21, 2013
Iowa groups want state money for Iowa City-to-Chicago passenger train
By William Petroski
A coalition of activist groups is lobbying Iowa legislators to provide $20 million in state funds to help establish the Iowa section of a proposed Chicago-to-Iowa City passenger train.
The state money is needed to secure an $87 million federal grant already approved for Iowa by the Federal Railroad Administration. Democrats who control the Iowa Senate support the state funding, but Republicans who control the House have had little interest, suggesting that if a passenger train is such a great idea that private investors will step forward.
The groups supporting state money for expanded passenger rail include Iowa PIRG, the Environmental Law and Policy Center, the Iowa Association of Railroad Passengers, the United Transportation Union Legislative Board, and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen. They sponsored a panel discussion on Monday at the Iowa Statehouse, citing the benefits of passenger trains for consumers and for rail freight service.
Amanda Martin, freight and passenger policy coordinator for the Iowa Department of Transportation, said Iowa and Illinois DOT officials are continuing to negotiate on plans for the Iowa City-to-Chicago train. In addition, a consultant is studying the entire railroad route between Chicago and Omaha, following the tracks of the Iowa Interstate Railroad in Iowa, on the potential for eventual rail passenger service. The study is expected to be finished this summer.
Available at: http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20130318/NEWS09/130318025/1056/news05
Friday, December 14, 2012
Iowa Environmental, Health Advocates Commend Soot Standards
Cutting Soot Good for People, Good for Planet
DES MOINES – Environmental and public health leaders from across Iowa joined Friday in commending new national standards to improve air quality and cut soot pollution.
“Soot is clogging people’s lungs and harming our health,” said Howard Learner, Executive Director of the Environmental Law & Policy Center. “These reasonable new clean air standards will accelerate deployment of better technologies that reduce pollution, improve public health and make the air safer to breathe.”
The standards target tiny pollutants from the burning of fuels like coal and diesel that have been connected to a wide range of harmful health impacts. Public health leaders see an opportunity to improve the lives of people in Iowa.
“The Iowa Public Health Association supports soot standards which safeguard the health of our children, the elderly, and people with asthma and other lung diseases, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes,” said Jeneane Moody, Executive Director, Iowa Public Health Association.
“Breathing particle pollution can damage the lungs and heart, trigger asthma attacks and heart attacks, and potentially even cause cancer and developmental and reproductive harm. Assuring safe air quality is key to assuring the health of Iowans,” said Moody.
Jessica Brackett, Executive Director of Clean Air Muscatine, noted that her city is not in compliance with Clean Air Act standards, which should serve as a call to action.
“For the sake of our public health, and our local economy, we must improve our air quality,” she said. “Ultimately, these safety standards will help Muscatine become a healthier community, build a more vibrant local economy, and become a destination city for those who appreciate the magnificence of nature at its finest.”
“Muscatine is much like other river cities. Our economy is fueled by industry with aging equipment, powered by coal, and dependent on heavy industrial and commuter traffic on a poorly designed transportation system, while our breathtaking bluffs exacerbate our air quality issues because of inversion,” added Brackett.
National clean air advocates added their support for the new standards and urged people to fight any challenges the new standards face going forward.
“People everywhere have a sacred right to clean air. Let’s make sure we protect that right here at home and our children will breathe easier,” said Dominique Browning, co-founder of the Environmental Defense Fund’s Moms Clean Air Force. “We cannot allow pro-polluters to weaken the Clean Air Act.
Monday, October 29, 2012
Check out these two recent ELPC podcasts about the launch of our innovative new education and advocacy websites, www.InIowaWater.org and www.InIllinoisWater.org.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Oct. 2, 2012
The Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC) today launched InIowaWater.org, a new online story-telling and advocacy tool that puts a human face on Iowa’s water quality issues. Iowa is home to severe water pollution problems from both urban and rural sources, but it is also home to some pristine water bodies and to farmers, parents, anglers, kayakers and leaders who are trying to make a difference.
“Iowa’s water belongs to us all,” said Steve Falck, ELPC’s Des Moines-based senior policy advocate and a native Iowan. “Every time we turn on the tap, let our kids jump in the local lake, or take the tackle box out for a weekend trip, that’s Iowa’s water touching us in very personal ways. We need to make sure it’s safe and clean.”
InIowaWater.org features six multi-media stories – including videos introducing viewers to Iowans affected by water quality – from across the state, from Okoboji to Muscatine. A list of the sites, waterways and impacted communities is included below.
Each story includes an opportunity to take action by signing a petition or submitting a letter to a local official regarding the water quality issue described in the content, and readers may submit their own stories and photos.
According to ELPC staff attorney Josh Mandelbaum, also based in Des Moines: “These are not ‘environmental stories.’ These are ‘people stories.’ Stories that show farmers and business owners trying to do the right thing. Stories that show Iowans enjoying the outdoors. Stories that demonstrate why clean, safe water is important to every Iowan.”
Added Falck, “We have the right, and we also have the responsibility, to be good stewards.”
ELPC is working to increase awareness of the water pollution issues facing Iowa and engage the public to participate in the public decision-making process surrounding water quality issues.
Stories on InIowaWater.org Launch Site
- West Lake Okoboji Pollution Prevention, Arnolds Park, IA – West Lake Okoboji is an Iowa landmark well-known for its beautiful blue water. Local landowners are working with state and private entities to “keep Okoboji blue” by installing wetlands that naturally clean and slow down runoff before it reaches the lake. Our story focuses on Curt, Steve and Dan Schnell – brothers and co-owners of the Okoboji View Golf Course, just 600 feet from the lake – who are working hard to prevent runoff while improving their business. Read the story. Watch the Video. Download print-quality photos.
- Black Hawk Lake Pollution Prevention, Lake View, IA – This lakeside community isn’t happy that swimming advisories seem to be posted every couple weeks. Homes and businesses were purchased because of their proximity to the west-central Iowa town’s inland lake, but they can’t go in that lake when foul-smelling algae is present. Lakeside residents and farmers are coming together to form a water quality plan. Our story focuses on Emily Onstot, a lakeside resident and mother who is involved in the local clean-up efforts, and Dean Teifenthaler, a lakeside resident and farmer who uses sustainable farming techniques that help lake quality while also boosting production and saving money. Read the story. Watch the video. Download print-quality photos.
- Drinking Water Issues with the Raccoon and Des Moines Rivers, Des Moines, IA – The Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers flow through many counties and cities packed with corn and soybeans before converging in Iowa’s largest city and capitol. How do rural and urban issues impact these iconic Iowa waterways? Can rural runoff affect far away urban drinking water supplies? This story focuses on Mike Delaney, who has transformed 60 acres of row crops into a native wetland that is decreasing pollution into the Raccoon River. Read the story. Watch the video. Download print-quality photos.
- Flooding Along the Cedar River, Cedar Rapids, IA – The 2008 floods devastated Iowa communities, which are still recovering. Since then, Iowa has made a concerted effort to gather data about flooding possibilities. But there is no state or local consensus on flood control policies – or on how to fund their implementation. How will communities survive the next ‘big one’? This story focuses on the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library, which has become the posterchild for the 2008 floods and subsequent clean-up. After the museum was ravished by the flood, it raised $25 million in 19 months to clean-up and pick-up the original structure – moving it 270 feet upstream and 11 feet higher off the ground. Read the story. Watch the video. Download print-quality photos.
- White-Water Kayaking on the Cedar River, Charles City, IA – Yes, you can go white-water kayaking in Iowa. Charles City’s Riverfront Park has become a mecca for tubers, paddlers, anglers and even those who just want a scenic place to walk their dog and eat their lunch. More than that, it’s also a boon for local businesses, which are seeing upticks in sales as a result of park traffic from near and far. All this on an area that used to be an eyesore. Instead of being a dumping ground, the Cedar River-front is now a downtown centerpiece. Read the story. Watch the video. Download print-quality photos.
- Potential Groundwater Contamination in Muscatine, IA – Our story focuses on Muscatine resident Sherry Leonard, who famously brings jars of her brown tap water to local hearings on drinking water quality. She’s also had three washing machines rust out in the last year. But officials say nothing’s wrong with drinking water in Muscatine, a town known for its huge industrial base. Sherry and other members of the grassroots Clean Air Muscatine (CLAM) are working to clean up the industrial pollution along the Mississippi River a stone’s throw from dense residential areas. Read the story. Download print-quality photos.
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Published July 12, 2012
Another view: Economy, environment can benefit each other
By Howard A. Learner
The campaign season is bringing hypercharged political sound bites about environmental progress even though there’s very strong public support for cleaner air that’s healthier to breathe, cleaner water that’s safer to drink and enjoy for recreation, and fewer dangerous toxics in our communities.
The best news is that environmental progress is being achieved together with the growing green economy and it’s helping drive Iowa’s and the nation’s economic recovery. Energy-efficient equipment and appliances, wind and solar energy development, cleaner more fuel-efficient cars and modern high-performance rail development are good for job creation, good for economic growth and good for the environment.
Nonetheless, some defensive polluters and politicized critics are hauling out the old myth and false dichotomy that we must choose between job creation and environmental progress. That wasn’t true 30 years ago, and it isn’t true today.
Let’s look at the facts and progress of innovative clean technologies here.
Energy efficiency improvements are creating jobs, saving people and businesses money on their utility bills, keeping money in Iowa’s economy and reducing pollution. The Energy Group (Des Moines), Michaels Energy (Cedar Rapids) and Energy Solutions-OTB (Ames) are among the many energy-efficiency businesses employing skilled workers designing and retrofitting commercial, agricultural and governmental buildings, schools and homes.
Saving energy saves consumers money. Less pollution means better public health and cleaner lakes and rivers for all. Why would anyone argue that it’s somehow smart to waste energy and money?
Wind power and solar energy development create manufacturing and technical jobs, rural economic development and pollution-free energy. Wind power is the fastest-growing global energy source, and Iowa ranks second nationally for installed wind power. The Environmental Law & Policy Center’s report on the wind energy supply chain in Iowa shows 2,300 wind-related manufacturing jobs in Iowa.
President Barack Obama called for extending the federal tax incentives in his May 24 speech at TPI Composites in Newton, which manufactures wind turbine blades. Solar is also ready to move forward. That means more work for Eagle Point Solar in Dubuque, Go Solar in Decorah and Inerex in Council Bluffs. Iowa politicians must get the policy framework right to keep advancing the state’s clean energy economy leadership.
Cleaner, more efficient cars and trucks save us money at the gas pump, cut back air pollution, and improve national security by making our country less dependent on foreign oil. They keep money in Iowa’s economy rather than drain dollars to the Middle East, Venezuela and oil-producing states.
The Obama administration’s leadership in stabilizing and modernizing the American auto industry is a true success story. The federal clean-car standards will increase fuel economy to a fleet-wide average of 35 mpg in 2016 and 54.5 mpg by 2025. That will save trillions of dollars for America’s economy, create jobs for Americans building the cleaner cars and reduce greenhouse gas pollution. This is a smart solution.
High-performance rail improves mobility, creates jobs and spurs economic growth, and reduces pollution. Midwest supply chain businesses will be manufacturing high-speed rail equipment. Modern, fast, comfortable and convenient rail service connecting Des Moines to Chicago and Omaha and other Midwestern cities is an important third transportation option to highway congestion with higher gas prices and rising air fares with fewer flights.
Gov. Terry Branstad should accept federal funding to upgrade Iowa City-Quad Cities-Chicago passenger rail. This is a sensible solution for our future.
We will soon be overwhelmed by 30-second political attack ads from all sides. Let’s separate sound solutions from the sound bites. We are achieving job creation, economic growth and better environmental quality together. That’s what the public wants and it’s happening.
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
The Iowa legislature passed a bill that will give residents and businesses a state tax credit for installing a solar system. The state tax credit piggybacks on the Federal Solar Tax Credit, providing 50% of its value. If a homeowner or business owner installs a $12,000 solar system, the federal tax credit is $3,600 and the Iowa credit will be $1,800 — together reducing the total cost by almost half. The bill has been sent to the Governor’s office for his signature. Stay tuned!
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
DesMoinesDem’s Bleeding Heartland Blog
DesMoinesDem is a suburban mom writing about Iowa politics and encouraging community discussion to hold public officials more accountable. In her “Iowa faith leaders call for action to limit climate change” blog this week, DesMoinesDem discusses 56 religious leaders having signed an appeal for Iowans to take actions to limit global climate change and prepare for the consequences of the damage to the global climate that has already been done:
“The faith leaders mention a recent warning to Iowa legislators from 44 scientists representing 28 Iowa colleges and universities. Unfortunately, even when Democrats controlled the state House and Senate, lawmakers did almost nothing to implement the Iowa Climate Change Advisory Council’s recommendations.
. . . On a related note, the 2011 Iowa Farm and Rural Life Poll indicated that 68 percent of Iowa farmers believe climate change is happening, 5 percent do not believe it is happening, and 28 percent are not sure. About 45 percent of that survey’s respondents said human activities are partly or mostly responsible for changing climate patterns.”
The Scoop: DesMoinesDem’s post discusses how faith leaders are speaking out in Iowa about climate change and calling for solutions-oriented actions by Iowa’s political leaders, who are not yet stepping up. Thanks DesMoinesDem for your post and your call to action directed to state legislators.
Read the whole story here: http://www.bleedingheartland.com/diary/5458/iowa-faith-leaders-call-for-action-to-limit-climate-change
Thursday, April 12, 2012
Supporters of wind and solar energy see Iowa as a leading candidate to usher in an era of clean, sustainable energy that creates economic growth and energy independence.
The Gazette in Cedar Rapids examines this potential and speaks with the Environmental Law & Policy Center’s Steve Falck.
” One way to help would be for the state to lead in the use of solar and wind energy, said Steve Falck, a former northeast Iowa legislator who’s now with the Iowa Environmental Law and Policy Center. “
Read the story.