in News Departments > New & Noteworthy
print the content item



Citing "uncertain and changing market conditions" - including doubts surrounding the extension of the wind energy production tax credit (PTC) - Siemens Energy said it is laying off 615 employees - more than 37% of its U.S. wind power workforce - across its manufacturing, projects and administrative-support functions.

The job cuts will be spread across the company's Hutchinson, Kan., nacelle assembly plant; its Fort Madison, Iowa, blade manufacturing facility; and its Orlando, Fla., Americas headquarters, which also serves as a base for about 200 field-based project support personnel, Siemens spokesperson Melanie Forbrick told NAW.

Just like many companies that have recently announced U.S. layoffs - including Vestas, Clipper Windpower, LM Windpower and DMI Industries - Siemens cited the looming expiration of the PTC as one of the reasons for the workforce reductions.

However, the company said other factors also contributed to the decision. For instance, the overall drop in wind turbine orders is also due to low natural-gas prices and a slow economic recovery.

“[T]he uncertainty surrounding the future of the production tax credit for new wind turbine installations, the current trend toward more natural-gas-based power generation due to record-low natural-gas prices and still lingering recession impacts on energy-demand growth are casting a shadow on the short-term future of the entire U.S. wind power industry,” the company said in a statement released to its employees Tuesday morning.

“As a result, following the rapid ramp-up of the wind power industry over the past five years, the industry is facing a significant drop in new orders, and this has an unfortunate consequence on employment in this segment of the power industry,” the statement read.

Siemens also noted that it had been working for 10 months to respond to the issues affecting its U.S. wind power business but, in the end, was unable to avoid making the layoffs due to market conditions beyond its control.

The company said it will continue to adjust its operations to reflect current and expected volume but stressed that it isn’t giving up on the U.S. wind energy market.

“We remain committed to maintaining our U.S. factories and will continue to support the U.S. industry, as well as export wind turbine components to markets across the Americas,” the company said.


Photo credit: Siemens Energy




Trachte Inc._id1770
Latest Top Stories

Wind And Solar Are Catching Up With Nuclear Power, Says Report

A new report from the Worldwatch Institute says nuclear energy's share of global power production is steadily shrinking. Meanwhile, renewables' share keeps growing.


Could New Desert Plan Spell The End Of California Wind Energy Development?

The California Wind Energy Association says it is disappointed with the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan, which was recently released by state and federal agencies.


New U.S. House Bill Includes Wind PTC Extension

U.S. representatives have introduced the Bridge to a Clean Energy Future Act of 2014, which would extend the production tax credit (PTC) and other provisions through 2016.


Utility-Scale Wind And Solar Keep Getting Cheaper

A new study measures the levelized cost of energy from various technologies and suggests that the costs of utility-scale wind and solar power are catching up with those of traditional sources, even without subsidies.


The Song Remains The Same: Ontario Seeks More Science Before Lifting Offshore Ban

The Ontario government says the nearly four-year-old offshore wind moratorium will remain in place until the province fully understands the technology’s impact on the environment.

Canwea_id1984
Renewable NRG_id1934
Future Energy_id2008
UnitedEquip_id1995