The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) named Rep. Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa) a U.S. Wind Champion for the 115th Congress at an event hosted by MidAmerican Energy in their Prairie Wind Farm operations center. AWEA presents U.S. Wind Champion Awards to members of Congress from both parties who demonstrate strong leadership in support of the American wind industry and the jobs it creates.
“Across the state, folks know just how much the wind energy sector means to Iowa. Currently, nearly 40% of the electricity produced in Iowa comes from wind,” said Congressman Loebsack. “Additionally, it brings good jobs to the state, boosts our rural economy and helps end our nation’s dependence on foreign oil. As the co-chair of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Caucus in the House, I have helped lead the way in promoting important initiatives, such as the Production Tax Credit, that assist the wind energy sector, as well as help boost our rural communities. Iowans know that wind works.”
“MidAmerican Energy is a leader in renewable wind energy, and it’s thanks in part to Congressman Loebsack’s leadership and long track record of supporting wind energy policies that make sense for our customers,” added Adam Wright, president and CEO of MidAmerican Energy. “Wind energy is clean and renewable, it helps keep our rates low and it benefits Iowa’s economy.”
Congressman Loebsack is part of Iowa’s longstanding tradition of bipartisan support for wind energy. Earlier this year, AWEA presented Wind Champion Awards to Senator Chuck Grassley and Congressman David Young.
“Congressman Loebsack has been a strong and consistent advocate for Iowa’s wind workers and farming communities,” said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA. “He has long defended a level playing field for wind, helping retain stability for U.S. manufacturing and encouraging investment in wind energy technology. The Congressman’s support for wind helps grow Iowa’s economy and we are proud to recognize him with the U.S. Wind Champion Award.”
Iowa is a national leader in wind power. Last year, wind farms generated 37% of the electricity produced in Iowa, a larger share than any other state. Close to 8,000 Iowans work in the wind industry and there are 11 active wind-related manufacturing facilities in the state. Iowa’s wind industry represents over $14.2 billion in private investment and wind energy is a drought-proof cash crop for Iowa farmers, with land lease payments totaling $20 to $25 million each year.
The U.S. is a global leader in wind power thanks to world-class natural resources and technological innovation. American wind power creates economic opportunity, homegrown energy, and clean air. A record 105,000 Americans across all 50 states work in wind, and wind affordably and reliably supplies over 6% of U.S. electricity, creating clean air benefits worth more than $8 billion each year.