While Republicans might be fretting about some of the leadership choices the new DFL majority in the Minnesota House made, local investors were pretty happy to see incoming House Energy Policy chair Melissa Hortman earlier this week.
At the Worthington Daily Globe, veteran ag reporter Julie Buntje writes in Celebrating state’s tallest towers:
With wind speeds topping 46 miles per hour — 53 mph at the top of the tower — Lars Falck, a representative of juwi Germany, clipped a bright red ribbon to signify the commissioning of Nobles County’s newest wind farm and Minnesota’s tallest towers.
Dozens of landowners, investors and juwi Wind LLC representatives were on hand for the Wednesday afternoon ceremony commissioning Community Wind South east of Reading. The wind farm consists of 15, 2-megawatt Repower towers, each towering 480 feet to the top tip of the blade.
Wednesday’s celebration had been a long time in the making, according to David Benson, Community Wind South board chairman.
“I’m very relieved and very happy,” Benson said following the ribbon cutting. “I feel so good that the project is finished. We’ve had a lot of ups and downs for the past 10 years. . . .I think we stayed true to our values — we wanted local investors,” Benson said.
. . .
Rep. Melissa Hortman, Brooklyn Park, was on hand for the event in her new role as chairwoman of the Minnesota House Energy Committee. She will help lead the state forward in its continued quest to advance renewable energy. Minnesota adopted a campaign in 2007 to reach 25 percent renewable energy by 2025.
“We’ve come a long way in the state of Minnesota since 2007, but there’s still more we can do,” she said. “I’m anxious to take us to the next step.”
Hortman said she was pleased with the Community Wind South project, not only because of the jobs it created in Minnesota, but because of the community ownership.
“The community will profit from the enterprise as it moves forward, and that’s exciting,” she said.
With some utility companies in the state already ahead of schedule in their push to reach the 25 by 25 goal, Hortman said there is still a lot of potential in the state to expand renewable energy.
“We need to grow the biomass percentage into our energy portfolio, we need to grow solar, and we need to continue to grow wind,” she said. “Wind has been so successful at creating jobs and creating wealth in Minnesota that it’s a good example of how we can continue to move forward.
Photo: Turbine blades wait for installation at the Community Wind South project in Minnesota. (Source: Wind on the Wires)
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