Wind energy has grown 35 percent in the United States over the past five years.1 It is clean and requires domestic manufacturing that is already creating jobs in Virginia. The Commonwealth should take advantage of the significant wind energy we have off our coast. A study by the Virginia Coastal Energy Research Consortium found that offshore wind energy could supply approximately 10 percent of Virginia’s annual electricity consumption and create between 9,700 and 11,600 career-length jobs.2 Virginia’s own James Madison University is home to the Virginia Wind Energy Collaborative, part of the Virginia Center for Wind Energy (VCWE) that works closely with local and regional economic and energy development authorities to provide wind related services to consumers and businesses. Virginia needs to continue its pattern of leadership and become a frontrunner in the clean energy economy.
• As Senator, I will support the Production Tax Credit to strengthen America’s manufacturing sector and ensure steady growth for the wind energy industry.
• I will support the development of Virginia’s offshore and land-based wind resources to create local jobs and generate clean, affordable electricity for the region.
1American Wind Energy Association. May 1, 2012.
2Hatcher, Patrick et al. Virginia Coastal Energy Research Consortium. Virginia Offshore Wind Studies, July 2007 to March 2010. April 20, 2010.