WASHINGTON—The American Wind Energy Association is disappointed that the Romney campaign has come out with an anti-wind stance, particularly in Iowa, the state that gets 20% of its power from wind and the state with more major manufacturing facilities than any other. According to a statement to the Des Moines Register, the presidential candidate supports letting the very popular and bipartisan wind industry Production Tax Credit expire at the end of this year. A poll, conducted by Public Opinion Strategies for the American Wind Energy Association, shows that that “an overwhelming majority of Iowa voters would be less likely to support an anti-wind candidate for office.”
Key findings from the Iowa poll include:
- Iowa voters are less likely to vote for candidates who do not support expanding wind power generation
- Iowans are supportive of using renewable energy sources, like wind energy to meet the growth in America’s energy needs
- Iowans, particularly Independents, believe that wind energy has been good for the state’s economy and has helped to create jobs in the state.
The full poll memo can be found here
The Hawkeye state currently employs as many as 7,000 people in the wind industry and is a top manufacturing state with more than 200 companies across 50 counties. Unfortunately, with the Production Tax Credit set to expire at the end of this year, as many as 3,000 jobs are immediately at risk.
In response to the recent position announced today by Governor Romney’s staff, Congressman Tom Latham (R-IA) made the following statement:
“I’m disappointed that the statement by Governor Romney’s spokesperson shows a lack of full understanding of how important the wind energy tax credit is for Iowa and our nation. It’s the wrong decision. Wind energy represents one of the most innovative and exciting sectors of Iowa’s economy. Nearly 7,000 hardworking Iowans are employed by over 250 businesses associated with the wind energy industry in our state, making Iowa the top state in wind energy employment. A continuation of the wind energy tax credit is in the best interest of our nation’s all-of-the-above energy policy for American energy independence and for our economy. I invite Governor Romney to step forward and re-evaluate the statement issued by his campaign spokesman.”
Just last week, Steve Thompson, general manager of Availon in Des Moines, IA told the Des Moines Register, “if Congress will let us finish the job, wind energy can do for America what it has already done for Iowa: create U.S. manufacturing jobs right here at home.”
The PTC enjoys widespread, bipartisan support from groups as diverse as the National Governors Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, the American Farm Bureau Federation, environmentalists, labor unions, and others. Members of the House and Senate have indicated their agreement that the PTC should be renewed.