« Continue Browsing

e-mail article Print     e-mail article E-mail

Patrick Springer, Published July 22 2009

Wind can power Minnesota economy

MOORHEAD – Minnesota could generate at least 3,000 jobs by catering to industries involved in making and installing wind towers that likely will result from the state’s ambitious renewable energy standard, advocates said today.

Minnesota 2020, an organization that promotes wind, said the state’s renewable energy standard – which obligates utilities to derive at least 25 percent of their power from renewable sources by 2025 – can be an economic engine.

The group estimates 3,000 to 5,000 jobs could be created from attracting companies that build wind turbines or towers or erect them on the massive farms that are dotting the prairies.

Also, wind-related industries could pump $8 billion into Minnesota’s economy over the next 20 years, according to the analysis by Minnesota 2020, a “think tank” based in St. Paul.

“I think my estimate is conservative,” said Nathan Paine, a research fellow with the organization, who used economic models developed by University of Minnesota economists.

For more on the story, read Thursday’s Forum.