The wind industry’s rapid growth is putting hundreds of thousands of Americans to work designing, developing, building, and running our energy future. Most of those jobs are in rural communities.
Today, over 500 factories across more than 40 states build wind turbines and the more than 8,000 components of a typical turbine. Many of these jobs are in the Rust Belt states, bringing employment right to the places where they’re needed most.
Wind energy companies have invested more than $100 billion in low-income rural communities. In fact, that’s where about 70 percent of wind farms are located: in rural America. A recent report in Bloomberg found that assessed land values in some rural areas have doubled thanks to wind energy investment. The additional local tax revenue is being put to work in these communities, reducing deficits and rebuilding schools.
In order to realize America’s clean energy future, we need to invest billions—possibly trillions—of dollars to modernize our electricity grid. That could potentially mobilize the U.S. rural economy in a way that hasn’t been seen since we built the Interstate Highway System.
Renewable electricity generation from technologies that are commercially available today, in combination with a more flexible electric system, is more than adequate to supply 80% of total U.S. electricity generation in 2050 while meeting electricity demand on an hourly basis in every region of the country.