Meanwhile, in the real world, there's more good news about how our renewable energy goals are bringing good jobs to Illinois, without all the risk and costs of the Tenaska, Leucadia, or Power Holdings bills.
Illinois' commitment to wind is bringing 600 new jobs to Pike County this year - with more to come:
PITTSFIELD, Ill. -- A St. Louis wind energy company plans to develop a 150-megawatt wind farm in Pike County west of Pittsfield, with the total cost of the project expected to be between $250 million and $300 million. Trey Goede, CEO of Affinity Wind, confirmed that his company is planning a 36-megawatt wind farm, which could become operational in the fourth quarter of this year, and a 114-megawatt expansion in 2012. The company plans to construct 75 2-megawatt wind turbines. Affinity announced last week that it closed a joint venture agreement with Chicago-based Suzlon Wind Energy Corp., a subsidiary of Indian-based Suzlon Energy Limited. The two companies will develop the wind farm under the venture called Surity Wind, LLC. ....Of course, these jobs aren't the result of a special interest "Affinity bill", or "Suzlon bill". They are the result of our Renewable Portfolio Standard, which, unlike the Tenaska, Leucadia, and Power Holdings bills, keeps utility bills low, invites competition, and invests in proven technology.
Affinity Wind estimated that more than $44 million would be spent locally during construction and $3 million annually once completed, with approximately 600 jobs created. More than $1 million in property taxes would be generated along with lease payments toward landowners. Goede said his idea has been received well in Pike County. "We have had landowners committed from day one, and they have provided their allegiance to the project and partnership to the project very early on," he said. "We are adding more landowners as we speak."
Clearly, the fastest, cheapest, cleanest way to create clean energy jobs for Illinois is to stay the course, and continue to prioritize renewables and energy conservation.