Thursday, May 02, 2013

Wind energy boosts economy, jobs in Great Plains, Rocky Mountains, other rural areas

A new study concludes that wind energy production can lead to higher incomes and more local jobs, especially for rural residents, reports the Daily Yonder. Among the more than 1,000 counties studied in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains, for the period from 2000 to 2008, "for each megawatt of wind power installed in the county," the county's personal income increased more than $2,000, from $9,300 to $11,500.

The top 25 percent of counties increased their total county income by an average of $2.6 million, and saw an increase of 132 jobs, the Yonder reports: "The study also found that the economic impact of wind-energy production increased if a county had a greater percentage of rural population, was located farther from a highway interchange or major city, or if a greater percentage of the population had earned an associate’s degree." (Read more) (Map by Energy Economics shows the total installed wind power capacity in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains)

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