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You have likely heard by now that President Trump at a fundraiser on Tuesday night made some patently ridiculous remarks about wind turbines, claiming that they lower property values of nearby homes by 75%, cause cancer, are unbearably noisy and kill massive quantities of birds. If you have not seen the remarks, watch the clip above. The twitter-sphere went wild in reaction to the President’s war on wind. What you may not have heard, is that the President’s wind power rant met with strong push back from the heartland. By early yesterday afternoon, the Kansas City Star published a strongly worded editorial explaining why Kansas backs wind power. Here are the facts the paper cited:
“In 2018, Kansas ranked among the top five states in energy produced by wind. Kansas gets 36 percent of its electric energy from wind, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. That’s the highest share in the nation.”
“In 2017, wind energy powered the equivalent of 1,719,000 homes in Kansas. The industry provided more than 4,000 jobs. Lease payments to Kansas farmers, according to one estimate, may reach $20 million a year — a real benefit for farmers struggling when the economy is down.”
“In 2017, according to the American Wind Energy Association, almost 8 million metric tons of carbon monoxide were not ejected into the sky because of all the wind energy produced in the state. Kansas saved more than 4 billion gallons of water, too.”
The President’s remarks were not popular in Iowa, or with that state’s senior Senator, either. The Des Moines Register reported that the Governor of Iowa, Republican Kim Reynolds, disagreed with the President on the economics of wind power and highlighted the important role wind energy plays in Iowa’s economy. Senator Chuck Grassley, in a call with reporters, went even further, calling the President’s statement “idiotic” and noting that he was the “grandfather” of the wind energy tax credit. Later Senator Grassley’s office issued a press release with a bipartisan appeal for more federal funding for wind energy development because “the wind industry employs more than 100,000 Americans and wind turbine technician is America’s second-fastest growing job. The wind industry also employs veterans at a rate that is 50 percent higher than the national average.”
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