Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The answer is blowing in the wind

Posted By on Tue, Dec 9, 2014 at 11:34 AM

Denver-based Environment Colorado released a new report last week on the growth of wind energy in Colorado and the nation. 

Colorado stands as one of nine states now generating more than 12 percent of its total electricity via wind power. 

The report leads with some hopeful statistics, including: "If America were to take advantage of just a fraction of its wind energy potential to get 30 percent of its electricity from the wind by 2030, the nation could cut carbon emissions from power plants to 40 percent below 2005 levels. That much wind power would help states meet and exceed the carbon dioxide emission reductions called for by the Environmental Protection Agency’s draft Clean Power Plan, and help the nation meet its commitment to cut U.S. carbon pollution by 26 to 28 percent by 2025."

You can read it in full here:

As well, here's the full press release from Environment Colorado:
The carbon pollution from 8 coal plants could be eliminated in Colorado if wind power continues its recent growth trajectory, according to a new analysis by Environment Colorado. The analysis comes just as Congress considers whether to renew tax credits critical to wind development.

“Wind power can replace the dirty energy sources of the past and the pollution that comes with them,” said Anna McDevitt, Campaign Organizer for Environment Colorado. “But Congress needs to act now to ensure a clean energy future.”

Wind power projects in Weld County and Colorado’s eastern plains already produced enough energy in 2013 to power 679,188 homes. And the analysis predicts wind will expand significantly in Colorado over the next 15 years, producing enough power for 4,607,033 million homes.
click to enlarge More turbines will mean less CO2. - SHUTTERSTOCK
  • Shutterstock
  • More turbines will mean less CO2.
“We have to move even more aggressively on all clean energy technologies, said Sam Weaver, Boulder City Council Member and CEO of Cool Energy. “Wind will be one of the largest pieces of the new clean energy portfolio so we need Congress to reinstate tax credits that can spur more wind development here in Colorado.”

The report, More Wind, Less Warming, comes just days after the comment period closed for the Clean Power Plan, which Congressional leaders are trying to block. The analysis also comes as lawmakers jockey over the fate of wind energy tax credits in the nation’s spending plan, due to be adopted next week.

"Adopting renewable energy standards, restoring the production and investment tax credits, and facilitating access to the grid to meet a 30% wind energy goal makes economic sense,” said The Climate Reality Project’s Mario Molina. “And when we consider the price we are already paying for the global warming pollution in the atmosphere and the consequences for humanity if we don’t decarbonize the economy, it is also the only morally justifiable path forward."

Continued, rapid development of wind energy would allow the renewable resource to supply 30 percent of the nation’s electricity by 2030, providing more than enough carbon reductions to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan. America has the potential to power itself 10 times over with wind that blows both over land and off the East Coast.

“Speeding the development of pollution-free wind energy will slow global warming,” said Anna McDevitt. “That’s why our leaders should invest now in healthy air and a healthy planet.”

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