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Renewables First

In their own words: what Midwesterners are saying on wind power

Aug. 10, 2017

The energy sector can be a technical and wonky place, with a lot of jargon around public utilities commission dockets, integrated resource plans, and electricity rate design and transmission issues.

But renewable sources of energy like wind and solar do something remarkable – they safely enable energy production to be shifted from faraway centralized plants to local homes, farms, churches, businesses, and communities. And that’s providing a chance for more people in many more places to   […]   Read More »

Wind Energy Is Proud to Be American

Am Wind Week Logo

I was a kid in 1976 when America was celebrating its bicentennial. It was a really big deal. I remember seeing and hearing signs and symbols of American pride on everything. Red, white and blue was everywhere. I even had red, white and blue plaid bell-bottom pants! Today, America’s growing wind energy sector is becoming a source of that kind of national pride, and it should be.

The inaugural American Wind Week, happening now, is a   […]   Read More »

6 Ways Rural Communities Can Win with Wind


When a wind project developer comes to town, it’s natural for rural communities to have a lot of questions about how a wind project might affect their community and its individuals. A wind project can be a big change, but it can also offer a lot of benefits to the landowners, townships, schools, towns, business, and counties that host them. Wind developers build 99 percent of their projects in rural communities and are eager to ensure   […]   Read More »

Transmission Projects Make Grid Reliable, Cleaner, and Invest in America

Transmission Line   Pixabay

Let’s talk about win-wins — technology that can dramatically improve our electrical system and drive the U.S. economy. I’m not talking about something as sleek as Tesla’s Powerwall or the chic design of modern wind turbines — it’s something essential to a modern way of life that most people see every day.

Transmission lines.

Transmission lines are the backbone of America’s grid, delivering electricity from where it is generated to where it is   […]   Read More »

Wind Energy Offers Cleaner Air and Saves Water Resources, Too

Earth Day2f7d2e3ff2

We celebrate Earth Day this month, which makes it an opportune time to take a look at the many benefits wind energy provides as a pollution-free energy resource.

Wind power creates a healthier future — it contributes to cleaner air and better health for Americans as a pollution-free electricity source.

U.S. wind farms cut sulfur dioxide emissions by 76,000 metric tons a year and nitrogen oxide emissions by 106,000 metric tons.

That   […]   Read More »

Smart Choice: Renewable Energy Drives Business Growth


Minnesota celebrates the 10th anniversary of its Next Generation Energy Act this year.  This bipartisan legislation to achieve 26.5 percent of our energy from renewable sources by 2025 sent a clear signal that Minnesota desired clean energy to protect our air and water, and it is open for business.  It worked.

This legislation sparked a renewable energy sector in Minnesota that has not only helped the state deliver low-cost clean energy to consumers; it is also   […]   Read More »

New Study: Wind Energy is a Jobs and Economic Engine

By Kelley Welf and Isak Kvam | Mar. 17, 2017
energy window sandesh North Carolina wind farm 5 Jul 2016

There’s a lot of talk about jobs these days. President Trump speaks often, and passionately, about bringing jobs (especially manufacturing jobs) back to America.  Wind energy is and will continue to be an important driver of the growth in American manufacturing and other family-supporting jobs across this nation.  And, according to a new Navigant study, more jobs are on the way.

The wind industry is an economic engine.  In 2016, wind power installations represented more   […]   Read More »

Smart Choice: Wind energy puts farmland to work in a new way

red barn image

Red barns, grazing cattle, and the proverbial ‘amber waves of grain’ personify everything good and wholesome about life in rural America.  Yet, across the country, many small towns are struggling.  Young people are leaving in search of good, family-supporting jobs. Schools and churches are closing or consolidating. Roads are falling into disrepair. Businesses are shuttered and left vacant, staple businesses like grocery stores struggle to survive, and even rural hospitals are closing at the rate of   […]   Read More »