New survey: Iowa county officials, landowners support wind development

A new survey from the Center for Rural Affairs (CFRA) shows Iowans like what they see: support for wind power among county officials and landowners remains high.

Iowa continues to lead the U.S. by generating over 36 percent of its electricity using wind, and it has the most installed capacity by area, showing that those who know wind best fully recognize its benefits.

“We were happy to see strong support for wind and solar among local elected leadership,” said Katie Rock, a policy program associate with the Center for Rural Affairs and one of the report’s authors.

The report found that local officials were likely to view wind energy as an economic development tool, and they were most likely to be supportive if they knew the economic benefits projects would bring to their communities.

Image courtesy of the CFRA.

CFRA’s findings also mirrored those from a recent groundbreaking study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL): a large majority of people have positive or neutral experiences living near wind turbines. Most CFRA respondents disagreed or were neutral when asked if wind turbines are a nuisance, following LBNL’s conclusion that over 90 percent of people living within five miles of a wind turbine report positive or neutral attitudes. In Iowa, specifically, a 2016 poll from the wind-rich 3rd congressional district found 89 percent of respondents supported growing wind energy.

Image courtesy of the CFRA.

Sounds like what we’ve been hearing all along:

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