July 27, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 27, 2016
David Jakubiak, ELPC
Katy Heggen, IEC
IEC, ELPC Comment Alliant Energy Plans for New Wind
Des Moines – Two of Iowa’s leading environmental policy groups have expressed strong support for a proposal announced by Alliant Energy today that would add up to 500 megawatts (MW) of new wind energy to Iowa’s energy mix.
“Alliant Energy’s new wind project will continue Iowa’s strong momentum on clean energy leadership. Across the state, utilities and developers are placing 10,000 MW of wind by 2020 – a major milestone – within reach,” said Nathaniel Baer, energy program director at the Iowa Environmental Council.
The recent extension of the federal wind energy production tax credit was a significant factor in Alliant Energy’s timing of this project. By moving forward before the end of 2016 to develop wind projects, Alliant Energy can capture the full value of this important tax incentive. Both the Council and ELPC supported long-term extensions of the federal PTC.
“We continue to reap the benefits of the extension of the federal PTC,” said Josh Mandelbaum, staff attorney at the Environmental Law and Policy Center. “This project further cements Iowa’s position as a national renewable energy leader.”
At the end of 2015, Iowa had 6,212 MW of installed wind accounting for 31.3 percent of Iowa’s electricity mix – more than any other state in the country according to the American Wind Energy Association. Iowa is expected to have up to 7,000 MW of wind installed before pending wind proposals are built. Those proposals include MidAmerican’s 2,000 MW Wind XI and Alliant Energy’s project announced today. If these projects are approved and constructed on time, Iowa will have over 9,000 MW of wind installed before 2020.
Alliant Energy’s wind project will provide significant economic and environmental benefits. Iowa wind energy already provides between 6,000 and 7,000 direct jobs and supports approximately 75 companies in the wind supply chain. Wind energy also provides over $17M annually in land lease payments to rural landowners, generates significant property tax revenue for counties, and attracts additional business to the state. Wind energy is also the lowest cost new source of electricity generation available in Iowa.
To learn more about this announcement, visit AlliantEnergy.com/whisperingwillow