In response to your editorial of March 5, “Federal energy funds should not create jobs overseas,” as members of the American wind industry, we are working hard to create American jobs to grow the American wind industry.

We are working closely with members of Congress to address their concerns and to find ways to create more American jobs. Enacting legislation such as a renewable electricity standard will provide the long-term commitment American companies need to justify investment in manufacturing facilities here in the United States.

This step alone would create more than 250,000 jobs in the next 15 years.

The American wind industry has grown rapidly in the recent past and now provides about 85,000 American jobs.  Our members have increased domestic manufacturing 12-fold since 2004 and invested over $1 billion in U.S. wind manufacturing facilities in the last three years.

More than 50 percent of the 8,000 component parts of wind turbines used in the United States are manufactured in the United States, up from 25 percent a few years ago. Our goal is to increase that percentage as quickly as possible by recruiting supply chain companies from across the nation, and all over the world, to build manufacturing plants in the United States.

Passing a renewable electricity standard would help persuade those companies by creating demand for wind components.

Additionally, there have been some misconceptions about the stimulus program. By law, 100 percent of the recovery act, or stimulus, tax provisions can only be used to help finance projects that are constructed exclusively in the United States. That means U.S. construction, transportation, engineering and other services are being performed by American workers, as well as manufacturing jobs for those components manufactured in the United States.

Without the Recovery Act, because other financing had dried up in the recession, our industry would have lost about 40,000 jobs in 2009. Instead, we held steady in total U.S. employment, now at about 85,000.


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