Don’t Let Anti-Wind Energy Groups Block Clean Energy in Congress

Wind power is one of our most promising solutions to air pollution and climate change.

With 2014 passing as the hottest year ever recorded, wind offers a no-brainer way to move away from burning coal, oil and natural gas, the fossil fuels that are a primary climate change cause, and still meet our electricity needs.

The U.S. Congress sets federal energy policy, so you’d think our elected officials would be embracing this home-grown, affordable energy solution. Not so. By and large, it is the fossil fuels industry that enjoys the greatest tax benefits and subsidies that ultimately limit wind power’s potential. The Power of Wind is leading a community movement to advocate for smarter, fairer energy policies. They’ve launched a Care2 petition to urge Congress to adopt “common-sense energy policies” that can unleash the power of wind in 2015.

Wind power is quickly becoming an important electricity source nationwide. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) projects that wind could help Americans meet as much as 20% of their electricity needs by 2030, though we don’t need to wait until then to enjoy the significant benefits it’s already providing. Clean energy sources like wind are already improving air and water quality and reducing fossil fuel demand, says DOE, with greenhouse gas benefits equivalent to taking 17 million cars off the road.

The economy is benefitting, as well. DOE says wind power is already generating 50,000 jobs in 43 states. By 2020, that number is expected to grow to 139,000 direct wind jobs and an additional 106,000 indirect jobs in all 50 states.

DOE believes wind energy could power the average American’s every day life as well as large-scale manufacturing operations and small businesses. Through small wind installations, offshore wind farms, and utility-scale wind facilities, wind could supply 35% of U.S. electricity needs by 2050.

In addition to creating jobs and getting America off fossil fuels, wind power helps conserve water.  In fact, the more wind power we use, the more water we save. As a nation, we could conserve 336 billion gallons of water by 2050 if we get 35% of our energy from wind. That’s the equivalent of half a million Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Of course, none of this will happen unless our elected officials give wind the same support coal, oil and natural gas enjoy. The Power of Wind’s petition reminds Congress that the price of wind power is decreasing as quickly as demand is increasing. “In the past five years, the cost of wind power has dropped by over 50%,” notes the group, while “Wind is reaching a growing number of families – Wind power has delivered a third of all new generating capacity over the past five years, and a record amount of new projects are under construction today.”

“Think about climate change and the pollution that threatens the land, air, and water our families depend on,” urges The Power of Wind petition. You can sign the petition and add your own reasons why you want Congress to enact common-sense energy policies here.