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Expiring tax credits put wind power on a trajectory to transcend coal
Soon-to-expire tax credits have done their job, putting wind power on a footing that makes it cheaper than coal-fired electricity and extended its influence from landlocked states to coastal regions.
Wind company seeks permits to build four turbine complexes in Montana
A New York company is in negotiations with Montana officials for permission to build four windfarms in the state. The projects, which would come online by 2020 if approved, would include an electricity-storage component that represents the leading edge of technology innovation across the industry. The company, Caithness Beaver Creek, says the windfarms would have the capacity to generate 320 megawatts of electricity and to store 160 megawatts of power, enough in total to power almost 400,000 homes.
Plans for a new Colorado energy economy
Plans by Xcel Energy to remake the electricity-generation industry in and around Pueblo, Colo., are being seen as a harbinger of a new energy economy. The company is seeking to close two of three coal-fired power plants in Pueblo and replace them with wind and solar facilities, a change that would create a net total of more than 50 jobs. The county, which has a population of about 165,000 and is strategically situated near major power transmission lines, is “poised to become the renewable energy hub for Colorado and likely the region,” said its director of economic development.
Commentary: Wind and solar suggest a potential boom in Ohio’s energy industry
Ohio stands to benefit from the expansion of the renewable energy industry, which by one estimate can create $2 billion in economic activity and 5,500 new jobs over the next decade or so. The state’s electricity market is ripe for the development of wind farms, rooftop solar, and utility-scale solar projects that could supply power to 1.1 households, nearly a quarter of the state’s total by 2020. “As the regional market continues to grow, Ohio can capture both investment and economic growth by building wind and solar facilities, providing itself and other PJM states with clean electricity,” writes the author.
‘Good, high-paying jobs’ in Wyoming’s emerging wind industry
As Wyoming grapples with how to manage its energy industry transition, more people are considering the economic benefits of the wind industry. One project in particular, the TransWest Express,captures some of the possibilities. “These are good, high-paying jobs. And when we finish this project, the permanent jobs are going to be roughly 150 people, well paid, fully-benefitted jobs that are really a boon to those communities,” said the CEO of the company building TransWest.
Wind Boom Brings 3,000 Jobs and Billions in Infrastructure Investment to Rural New Mexico
New Mexico ranked first nationally for windfarm construction last year, according to a new study that sees the state’s rural communities benefitting especially from an influx of investment that is expected to continue. The wind industry has invested $3 billion in New Mexico and created about 3,000 jobs: “Employment runs the full gamut, from front-end field workers who assess wind resources and work with local communities to construction jobs and long-term employment for operations and maintenance folks. “Wind technicians make up one of the two fastest-growing jobs nationwide alongside solar installers.”
Op-Ed: Why a Big Utility Is Embracing Wind and Solar
Costs for renewable technologies are decreasing. In Colorado, Xcel will replace two coal-burning units with built from scratch wind and solar plants and still save money.
Xcel Energy receives shockingly low bids for Colorado electricity from renewable sources
"What stands out about the response Xcel received is that wind sources with storage are now cheaper than coal generation, and solar plus storage is now cheaper than about 75 percent of coal generation in the state, according to CarbonTracker."
IEEFA Update: The Saudi Arabia of Solar? American Indian Country
Energy Transition Openings Now in the Four-Corners Region of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah
Trump’s Coal Programs Could Undermine Wind and Solar Industries
Several Trump administration policy proposals aimed at propping up the coal industry stand to slow the growth momentum of solar- and wind-powered electricity generation. They include “asking regulators to rewrite power market rules, revamping the tax code, and imposing tariffs on foreign-made solar panels.”
Congressional Push to Apply Oil-and-Gas Tax Break to Solar and Wind Sectors as Well
Two members of Congress are proposing expanding an important gas-and-oil tax-break mechanism to the solar and wind industries. The mechanism, called a master limited partnership, or MLP, is “one of biggest boons for the oil-and-gas sector,”allowing companies “to lighten their tax loads and get easier access to investment in pipelines and other projects.”
Fastest-Growing Job Category in U.S.: Wind and Solar Techs
Demand for solar- and wind-energy technicians is expected to double over the next decade, according to the latest employment-projection trends from the Labor Department.