Iowa can produce more than enough energy from wind to meet its obligations under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan (CPP), according to a new study funded by the Energy Foundation.
In fact, the state has enough wind potential to help a half-dozen nearby states reach their CPP targets.
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“The federal Department of Energy in 2015 updated its 2008 Wind Vision study, and found it would be feasible, both technically and economically, for Iowa to add about 21,000 megawatts of wind between now and 2030, bringing the state’s total wind infrastructure to 27,000 megawatts,” Midwest Energy News reports.
“That’s far more than Iowa needs itself,” says Tom Wind, one of the authors of the new report. “We’re connecting the dots from all of those other studies. It’s a no-brainer.”
With 5,688 MW of wind capacity supplying 28% of its electricity in 2014, Iowa had only developed 1% of its overall potential, Uhlenhuth writes. Which means states like Ohio, Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri may turn to Iowa once they’ve tapped their most affordable wind resources.
“There are usually sweet spots in every state where there are good wind resources and available transmission,” he says. “Chances are they’ll use all their best spots first.” After that, Iowa may be their next best source.
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