Results of the Kansas Wind Energy Supply Chain Survey, which is designed to measure the state's wind energy capabilities and guide future wind initiatives, have been released by the Kansas Department of Commerce.
Initiated in August 2009, the survey solicited data from organizations in the wind industry supply chain and those looking to enter the market. The survey captures information such as capabilities, barriers to entry and workforce issues.
Survey results are expected to allow the Kansas Department of Commerce and the Advanced Manufacturing Institute at Kansas State University to compile a resource directory of supply-chain companies and organizations, and serve as a guide for state leaders and policy-makers as they work to advance the state's wind energy industry.
The survey was coordinated by a partnership of the Kansas Department of Commerce, the Advanced Manufacturing Institute, the Climate and Energy Project, the Blue-Green Alliance and the American Wind Energy Association.
A total of 227 respondents filled out the survey, and 210 complete responses were included in the final data analysis. About 27% of the survey respondents reported that they are currently serving the wind industry, and the other 73% of the survey respondents are not currently supplying to the wind industry but indicated a great interest in the industry.
Sixty-six percent of the companies currently in the wind industry have planned future expansion projects related to the wind industry, and most of the expansion plans involve increasing equipment, personnel, facility size, as well as gaining entrance into new markets.
Further, 40% of the respondents currently in the wind industry reported they need assistance with their future growth objective, with 61% indicating access to accurate and detailed information as their major need.
‘These results give us a great overview of the state's wind energy capabilities and will help us focus our efforts and resources as we seek to make Kansas a wind energy leader,’ says Gov. Mark Parkinson, D-Kan. ‘This report will serve as a resource directory – a phonebook, really -for wind-related businesses to research and contact each other, and it will also serve as an incredibly useful guide for state leaders involved in growing the state's wind industry.’
While quality control was the most important factor listed for workforce training – followed by safety – getting in touch with the right people and lack of product specifications were the biggest challenges faced by those companies.
Companies that haven't completed the Kansas Wind Energy Supply Chain Survey are still encouraged to do so at kansaswindindustry.com.
SOURCE: Kansas Department of Commerce