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Setting the record straight about wind energy

Wind generation is a great way for us to deliver clean and reliable energy to the communities we serve. Despite the prevalence of wind energy across the Midwest, it can be easily misunderstood. Read on as we bust some myths and learn how wind energy contributes to a brighter future.

Myth: wind energy is expensive

A common misconception about wind energy is that it is a costly way to produce electricity. New innovations in wind energy over the last couple of decades have lowered the cost to operate wind turbines and increased the efficiency of the machines. Wind turbines are low maintenance and require limited repairs. Wind energy is also good for the economy: The Department of Energy’s latest wind energy report says that the United States wind industry supports 116,800 jobs. Rural areas benefit distinctly from wind energy, because it powers many homes and businesses. With no associated fuel costs, wind energy is a smart, affordable choice.

Myth: wind energy is new

Although we have been investing in more wind projects in recent years, it certainly isn’t a new way to generate electricity. In the early 1900s, traditional windmills were used to pump water and grind grain for ranchers. In the 1970s, oil shortages inspired research into alternative ways to produce energy, and the U.S. federal government began investing in wind. Since then, wind energy has evolved into our modern wind turbines.

Myth: wind energy only works during certain times of the year

Wind farms are deliberately built on flat, vast farmland where the wind speeds reach at least 14 miles per hour. But even when wind gusts aren’t quite at that speed, wind turbines are useful. They can take hours to stop spinning their blades, which explains why you may see them turning on less breezy days.

Wind turbines reduce environmental dangers and other toxic byproducts that traditional energy sources emit, creating a healthier environment for future generations Wind energy is also crucial in helping us reach our goal of net-zero carbon emissions for our electricity by 2050.

Check out our recent wind projects to learn more about how we’re advancing renewable energy.

Kaitlyn is an intern with the External Communications Team. She is a student at The University of Iowa, studying Journalism & Mass Communication and Event Management. Kaitlyn is passionate about sustainability and is eager to help tell Alliant’s story in their journey to create a better future.

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