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Associated Press, Published August 14 2012

Tax credit loss makes ND wind jobs uncertain

FARGO — The possible loss of a federal tax break for the wind industry has some North Dakota officials nervous about the future of 800 jobs.

DMI Industries in West Fargo employs 216 people making wind towers. In Grand Forks, 630 people work at LM Wind Power, which supplies components for wind turbines.

The federal wind production tax credit is equal to 2.2 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity. Wind power becomes more expensive without the credit.

The Forum reports that wind energy development in western North Dakota has slowed in recent months. The state has almost 1,500 megawatts of wind energy generation capacity, and more than 5,000 additional megawatts have been proposed.

A North Dakota Public Service Commission engineer says electric demand is down because of the sluggish national economy.

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Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.