Wind Builds the Future in Rural Communities


Case studies on wind’s local economic impacts

Communities across the country, particularly those in rural areas, currently face a barrage of challenges as they seek to build vibrant local economies. Attracting and retaining young people, adequately funding schools, and providing essential services have all proved difficult in recent years. And that was before the COVID-19-induced recession added another layer of uncertainty. However, some communities are overcoming these obstacles better than others—those hosting wind projects.

Wind projects pay over $1.6 billion in state and local taxes and landowner lease payments every year, and this number only goes up as more wind projects come online. This critical revenue helps bridge budget shortfalls and allows communities to invest in their future, providing new resources to expand opportunities in their schools and social services. The jobs needed to build, operate and maintain wind projects offer young people careers that will support their families without needing to leave home, and lease payments provide farmers and ranchers a drought-proof cash crop that stabilizes agricultural economies.

This whitepaper includes case studies spanning nine states, providing specific examples of local benefits wind projects create, and highlighting the many ways wind is building a prosperous future.

Wind power case studies:

  • O’Brien County, Iowa
  • Cherokee County, Iowa
  • Ford/Livingston Country, Illinois
  • Logan County, Illinois
  • Tioga (Williams County), North Dakota
  • Spirit Lake Tribe, North Dakota
  • Ford County, Kansas
  • Pratt County, Kansas
  • Torrance County, New Mexico
  • Sweetwater, Nolan County, Texas
  • Oldham, Randall, and Potter Counties, Texas
  • Holt County, Nebraska
  • Antelope County, Nebraska
  • Benton County, Indiana
  • Randolph County, Indiana
  • Campbell County, South Dakota
  • Deuel County, South Dakota
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