Article

Farmers, others want utilities plugged into wind power

A coalition of farmers, consumer groups and corporations want the state to adopt a standard that would require Indiana utilities to produce 10 percent of Indiana's electricity with renewable energy by 2016.

"States like Texas have used a RES (renewable energy standard) to catapult themselves into some of the largest renewable energy markets in the world," said Benton County Commissioner Jim Hasser, in calling for a similar standard in Indiana.

The coalition's call came two days before Gov. Mitch Daniels is scheduled to release a state strategic energy plan, which has been in the works for more than a year.

That plan will be focused on meeting Indiana's future energy needs, according to Jane Jankowski, a spokesperson for the governor.

The Benton County commissioners are one of the founding members of the Indiana Coalition for Renewable Energy and Economic Development, which is calling for adoption of the 10 percent standard. Other groups that are part of the coalition include the Hoosier Environmental Council, Citizens Action Coalition and White Construction, one of the nation's largest erectors of wind turbines.

Members of the coalition met with the governor's alternative electricity task force on April 27 in Indianapolis, according to Grant Smith, executive director of the Citizens Action Coalition.

But the task force has not met since, and the member... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

"States like Texas have used a RES (renewable energy standard) to catapult themselves into some of the largest renewable energy markets in the world," said Benton County Commissioner Jim Hasser, in calling for a similar standard in Indiana.

The coalition's call came two days before Gov. Mitch Daniels is scheduled to release a state strategic energy plan, which has been in the works for more than a year.

That plan will be focused on meeting Indiana's future energy needs, according to Jane Jankowski, a spokesperson for the governor.

The Benton County commissioners are one of the founding members of the Indiana Coalition for Renewable Energy and Economic Development, which is calling for adoption of the 10 percent standard. Other groups that are part of the coalition include the Hoosier Environmental Council, Citizens Action Coalition and White Construction, one of the nation's largest erectors of wind turbines.

Members of the coalition met with the governor's alternative electricity task force on April 27 in Indianapolis, according to Grant Smith, executive director of the Citizens Action Coalition.

But the task force has not met since, and the member groups have heard nothing back on the issue, Smith said.

The coalition fears that on Friday the governor will only talk about tax credits for utilities that use renewable energy, with no firm requirement that they do so, Smith said.

The coalition is pushing for adoption of a bill -- introduced by Rep. Don Lehe, R-Brookston, and Rep. Dale Grubb, D-Covington -- that calls for the 10 percent renewable fuels standard for electrical generation in Indiana.

The coalition said 20 states have adopted similar standards.

Wind turbines are one of the most oft-cited means of producing electricity from renewable energy. Wind turbine companies typically pay farmers between $4,000 and $9,000 per year for every commercial-scale wind turbine installed on their land.

Doug Morehouse, president of the White County Farm Bureau, said Daniels has done a great job of advancing renewable energy initiatives such as biofuel plants. But he said those steps alone are not enough to end over-reliance on foreign oil and fossil fuels.


kbenman@nwitimes.com

 


Source: http://nwitimes.com/article...

AUG 10 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/3899-farmers-others-want-utilities-plugged-into-wind-power
back to top