Texas Governor Rick Perry has announced a major public-private initiative to further diversify the state's energy supply by expanding wind-generated energy.
"This is a landmark day, as the state of Texas partners with private industry to make a historic investment of more than $10 billion in new wind energy infrastructure that will diversify our energy production, clean up our air and help Texas surpass our renewable energy goals," Perry says.
Private companies have agreed to the capital investments in wind energy generation, while the Public Utility Commission will direct the construction of additional transmission lines to capture and deliver the zero-emission power, Perry adds.
Texas has abundant wind energy, particularly in West Texas and along the gulf coast. In 2001, Texas added more wind power capacity than all other states combined. Earlier this summer, the state surpassed California as the nation's leader in wind generation capacity.
"The Texas Legislature and Public Utility Commission solved the transmission obstacle in Texas, and we're proud to be affiliated with a forward-thinking legislative and regulatory regime that will help our industry deliver the benefits of low-cost and clean wind energy to the citizens of Texas," comments Alec Dreyer, chief executive officer of Horizon Wind Energy.
"We have made a commitment to Texas because it has a great regulatory climate and an outstanding wind resource," adds Andrew Bowman, senior vice president of Airtricity Inc. "If Texas will make the infrastructure investments necessary to keep the wind industry vibrant, we intend to invest more than three billion dollars in Texas over the next seven years."