WASHINGTON, DC– Congressman Robert Dold (R-IL-10) was presented today with a USA Wind Jobs Champion Award for his determined support and diligent work in helping to create and sustain U.S. jobs in the wind energy industry and its manufacturing supply chain.
"As an Eagle Scout and Troopmaster, I believe it is important that we utilize an 'all-of-the-above' approach to our environment that utilizes our natural resources and produces clean, renewable energy," said Dold. "Wind power provides clean energy that helps power homes right here in Illinois. Not only does wind supply a renewable energy source, it creates manufacturing and production jobs right here in Illinois."
John Purcell, vice president for wind energy for Leeco Steel LLC of Lisle, Illinois, who also serves on AWEA's board of directors, and Katie Chapman, Development Project Manager of EDP Renewables North America LLC (EDPR) presented Congressman Dold with a commemorative plaque and wind turbine bolt, made in the U.S.A from American steel by the Dyson Corporation of Painesville, Ohio.
"Wind energy is a tremendous success story all across the country," said Purcell. "My company, Leeco Steel, is a great example. Six years ago less than 2% of Leeco's business was wind. Today, that has grown 10-fold. Congressman Dold's leadership has been crucial to attracting a brand new manufacturing sector to the U.S. and to the state of Illinois."
"Representative Dold's continued support of the wind energy industry in the state is helping to keep thousands of Illinois residents working to manufacture key components and technologies to build America's energy future," said Katie Chapman, Development Project Manager at EDPR. EDPR has developed, constructed and currently owns and operates five wind farms in Illinois with a capacity of nearly 800 MW – enough to power over 200,000 average Illinois homes with clean energy.
Illinois has already attracted investment from three major wind industry players, including tower manufacturer Trinity Structural Towers and gearbox manufacturer Winergy Drive Systems Corporation, allowing many smaller manufacturers to get involved in the wind energy supply chain. At least 28 facilities in Illinois currently manufacture components for the wind energy industry. Over 6,000 workers in Illinois are employed in the state's wind energy industry.
"I want to thank Congressman Dold for his strong support of American jobs and private investment in one of America's fastest growing manufacturing sectors," said Denise Bode, CEO of AWEA. "Congressman Dold understands that wind power is creating an American success story, but this success depends on stable tax policy. With the Congressman's strong support, we are working to extend American wind's crucial Production Tax Credit and save tens of thousands of good American jobs in the wind industry."