|  Mar 30, 2015

Wind on the Wires Brings Wind, Business and Energy Policy Leaders to Minnesota

Tom Kiernan, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association will give special remarks

ST. PAUL, MINN. (March 3, 2015) – Several prominent energy and climate change leaders will be coming to Minnesota on March 19 for an event hosted by Wind on the Wires at The St. Paul Hotel.  The event, entitled, “Energizing the Future: Powerful Voices and Pioneering Leaders” will be an important gathering for the renewable energy sector as energy industry thought leaders discuss the future of national, state and regional energy policy. 

The headline panelists feature:  Bob Inglis (R-SC), Executive Director of Energy and Enterprise Institute; Jon Wellinghoff, Former Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC); Rob Threlkeld, Global Manager of Renewable Energy for General Motors; and Duncan McIntyre, Managing Director of Market Inventory at Altenex LLC.  The panel discussion will be moderated by Paul Douglas, Meteorologist, Entrepreneur, and Founder of Media Logic Group. In addition, Tom Kiernan, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) will give special remarks about the forthcoming Department of Energy Wind Vision report, due to be released the week of March 16.  The report is expected to show that wind energy can supply 10 percent of the nation’s electricity demand by 2020; and double to 20 percent by 2030.

“We are pleased to be able to bring these outstanding thought-leaders to Minnesota to discuss the future for clean energy in Minnesota and across America,” said Wind on the Wires Executive Director Beth Soholt. “Minnesota’s success in building a clean energy economy is the direct result of establishing bold but doable policies. When the state’s Renewable Energy Standard was signed into law in 2007, it opened the door for businesses to invest in this state, and it has produced good results.”

According to the Minnesota Clean Energy Economy Profile report, Minnesota had 15,388 clean energy jobs statewide last year.  The state has seen a 288% increase in wind power jobs since 2000, compared to an 11% state employment growth during the same time period.  Wages in the wind power sector are more than $10,000 higher than the average annual wage in Minnesota.  “We applaud Minnesota’s leadership in the clean energy sector. We are enormously proud of the nearly 2,000 wind power jobs and particularly the 553% increase in wind power businesses in Minnesota since 2000,” said Soholt.

“Minnesota has a lot of offer.  It has outstanding natural resources to supply clean energy, a highly educated work force to draw upon, and an inherent desire to lead on important issues that benefit the state’s environment, the economy, and grow good family-supporting jobs for its citizens,” said AWEA CEO Tom Kiernan.  “Minnesota has been an early leader in embracing clean energy, and I hope Governor Dayton and the state legislature will reaffirm that commitment for the next generation.”

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About Wind on the Wires
Wind on the Wires is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in St. Paul, Minn., which is comprised of wind developers, environmental organizations, tribal representatives, public interest groups, clean energy advocates, farm groups and businesses providing goods and services to the wind industry. Our mission is to overcome the barriers to bringing wind energy to market by addressing technical and regulatory issues, as well as through education and public outreach.

For more information about the 2015 “Energizing the Future” gala event, click here.

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