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Benefits of Wind Energy

Pennsylvania's existing wind farms, and ongoing development of the state's wind resources, are bringing a new source of jobs and economic prosperity to rural areas as well as reducing the state's dependence on polluting energy sources.

Green Mountain Wind Farm - FPL Energy
  • Building and maintaining wind farms creates quality jobs for Pennsylvanian citizens and communities. In fact, according to the Wisconsin Energy Bureau, wind development creates three times as many jobs per dollar as do fossil fuel power projects. Every new megawatt of wind energy creates between 15 and 19 jobs. (Source: NC WWG) A Black & Veatch study in Pennsylvania suggested that if the state increased the renewable (including wind) share of its electricity supply to only 10%, the change would result in 85,000 additional job-years for Pennsylvanians.
  • One wind turbine occupies only 1/4 acre of land, including access roads. Farming, ranching, forestry, and other land use can continue freely on land occupied by wind turbines.
  • Farmers and rural landowners can benefit from wind energy in many ways, including generating their own power, leasing land to wind developers (landowners can earn over $2000 a year for each wind turbine installed on their property), and becoming wind developers themselves.

Waymart Wind Farm - FPL Energy

Meyersdale Wind Farm - FPL Energy
  • Wind, the fuel of wind power, is free. Therefore, the cost of wind power to Pennsylvanian consumers is not affected by the fluctuations of global markets, unlike fossil fuel prices.
  • Wind energy is a 100% pollution free energy source, providing a reliable and sustainable supply of electricity without contributing to air pollution or global warming. Increasing Pennsylvania's wind energy supply decreases our need for dirty fossil fuel power plants powered by coal and other limited resources.

Pennsylvania is home to one of the nation's most progressive alternative energy portfolio standards, ensuring that 18% of all energy generated in the Commonwealth comes from clean, efficient sources by 2020. The Commonwealth is one of two states with a portfolio standard that includes energy efficiency, and the Commonwealth's portfolio standard far surpasses any other state requirement for solar energy, guaranteeing a market share for solar that is some 300% greater than anywhere else in the country. Benefits include $10 billion in increased output for Pennsylvania, $3 billion in additional earnings, and between 3500 and 4000 new jobs for residents over the next 20 years.

For more information on the economic benefits of wind power for Pennsylvania, read the following report: Wind Energy is Good for Pennsylvania's Economy (PDF 40 KB).