A 150-foot-long wind turbine blade positioned on the northwest corner of the Iowa State Fairgrounds was the site of a ceremony Monday. Governor Kim Reynolds signed the blade — and signed a proclamation declaring this “wind week” in Iowa.
“As the governor of this state, I certainly understand the importance that renewable energy has not only for Iowans, but for our economy,” Reynolds said. American Wind Energy Association C-E-O Tom Kiernan says more than nine-thousand people are working in 10 different Iowa factories that are supplying things like wind turbine towers and blades.
“I was in Washington, D.C. with a wind tech from Iowa talking about the jobs and he corrected me. He said: ‘No, no, no. This isn’t just a job. This is a career,’” he said. “….We’re having, because of the training programs, more people stay in Iowa and rural America.” Iowa Economic Development Authority director Debi Durham says one-third of all consumers make purchasing decisions based on a company’s environmental and social impact.
“Indeed, businesses are increasingly focused on their environmental footprint and the fact that we can power a production economy with affordable, reliable and renewable energy is a powerfall calling card for our state,” Durham said. “It’s one of the many reasons sustainability-minded businesses like Facebook and Apple and Google have chosen Iowa.” By 2020, Iowa wind turbines are projected to account for 40 percent of the energy produced in the state.