Wind power, biomass and other sources of renewable energy will bring economic investment, new tax revenues and job creation to Missouri's struggling rural communities, according to a report released by the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The report, ‘A Clean Energy Economy for Missouri: Analysis of the Rural Economic Development Potential of Renewable Resources,’ examines the potential for renewable energy resource development, specifically looking at how Missouri's wind, biomass and biogas potential will benefit rural communities.
‘Clean energy can bring jobs and income to rural Missouri,’ says Martin R. Cohen, an independent energy policy analyst who authored the report. ‘Within Missouri's borders are vast resources of wind, land and water – all the ingredients needed for Missouri to become a national leader in new energy development, creating tens of thousands of good jobs and substantial new sources of income for farmers.’
The report notes that Missourians spend more than $18 billion every year on natural gas for heating, fuel for cars and trucks, and electricity to power homes and businesses. With a population of nearly 6 million people, that comes to $3,000 in energy costs for every person in Missouri. Most of those dollars leave the state, never to return, due to the fact that 84% of Missouri electricity is generated using coal, almost all of which is shipped in from Wyoming.
The report says that the operation of 25 moderate-scale wind farms would provide thousands of construction jobs, 550 permanent construction jobs, $15 million in property tax revenues and $75 million in ongoing positive local economic impact in Missouri.
For more information, visit nrdc.org.
SOURCE: The Natural Resources Defense Council