USW, AWEA Announce Partnership To Promote Wind Development

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The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) and the United Steelworkers (USW) have released a joint framework agreement to create a Partnership for Progress in accelerating the development and deployment of wind energy production in the U.S.

AWEA and USW jointly recognize that the deployment of wind energy must be linked, to the maximum extent practicable, with the development and utilization of domestically produced materials, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), and component parts.

The basic components of the partnership include the following:

– Commitment to work cooperatively to advance a comprehensive public policy agenda that will create the long-term certainty needed to dramatically expand the deployment of wind energy across the country and enhance the ability of OEMs and component manufacturers with domestic operations to meet the growing needs of the industry.

– Commitment to aggressive development and utilization of OEMs and suppliers with domestic operations to ensure energy and employment security. Results-oriented targets will be agreed upon to ensure that existing and new sources of domestic supply grow, over time, to further enhance the U.S.' energy security and assist in the economic recovery.

– Commitment to the establishment of an inventory of existing sources of supply and joint identification of opportunities to promote new sources of supply located domestically to address gaps in the supply chain. Periodic assessments to measure the success of the partnership will be conducted to ensure that jointly developed goals are being achieved.

– Commitment to jointly develop training programs to ensure that workers needed in the industry have the skills necessary to meet the growing needs of the entire sector – from wind energy production to the domestic manufacturing base needed to supply the industry. This will also include joint efforts to ensure that suppliers have the capacity, as well as the standards of excellence, needed to meet the sector's needs.

‘We can't replace our dependence on foreign oil with a dependence on Chinese-made wind turbines,’ says Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio. ‘It's critical that American manufacturers have the resources to develop and deploy wind energy components. Clean energy will help America regain its leadership in manufacturing. We need to ensure American workers and manufacturers are building the clean energy components that will be used around the world.’

AWEA and the USW plan to release a cooperative action agenda that they intend to jointly pursue and advocate for adoption by Congress and the Obama administration. That agenda will include policies such as a federal renewable electricity standard and the extension of necessary tax incentives.Â
To read the framework agreement, visit awea.org.

SOURCE: American Wind Energy Association Â

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