WASHINGTON—The American Wind Energy Association joined forces with Operation Free at a bipartisan, bicameral press conference with Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.), and veterans from around the country to call on Congress to extend the renewable energy Production Tax Credit (PTC).
Thousands of veterans from across the country have signed a petition to Congress urging an immediate extension of the PTC. Over 400 of the veteran signatories are currently employed in the U.S. wind industry.
"Our industry is proud to employ so many servicemen and women in our ranks," said Denise Bode, CEO of the American Wind Energy Association. "A diversified energy portfolio that includes wind power is a path to U.S. energy security. Congress needs to act swiftly to protect the 37,000 jobs at stake and restore stability to this critical and broadly supported industry."
"Work in wind energy offers vets the opportunity to use a wide variety of skills they learned in the military, such as risk analysis, problem-solving and contract negotiation,and we're happy to have them as members of our team," said John DiDonato, Vice President of Wind Development, NextEra Energy Resources.
"Our returning servicemen and women come back uniquely qualified and prepared for work within the wind industry, and have proven themselves to be some of the most talented and valuable candidates available," said Gabriel Alonso, CEO of EDP Renewables North America. "We are proud to be an employer who relies heavily upon the work of our veterans."
Both DiDonato and Alonso are current board members of the American Wind Energy Association.
Veterans employed in the wind industry from across the country flew to Washington, D.C., this week to meet with members of Congress from their home states. To learn more about this effort to preserve this growing American work force, and the 500,000 jobs wind energy will support when it generates 20 percent of America's electricity, please visit www.saveusawindjobs.com.