• Join the Climate Ride finish at Northerly Island September 9th!!

    September 3, 2014. Join this year's riders to celebrate the end of Climate Ride, a 300-mile benefit bike ride to raise awareness of bike advocacy, sustainability, renewable energyand the threat of climate change, beginning in Grand Rapids, MI and ending at Northerly Island in Chicago, IL.

    For more details read the press release below.

  • Join us at the 2014 Minnesota State Fair!

    August 21, 2014. Come visit the Windustry staff and volunteers at the 2014 Minnesota State Fair! We are presenting the Wind Energy Center within the Eco Experience from August 21-September 21, 2014.

    Come and see the awe-inspring 123 foot tall wind turbine blade and climb into a replica base of a wind turbine.  You can also see many maps of wind speeds and wind projects throughout Minnesota and view videos about wind energy. We have tools and information to help you find out if your home is suitable for a wind project and to learn about policies like net metering.  We will also take your picture and make you a free pin with it!

    The Wind Energy Center booth is staffed from 9am to 9pm every day of the fair.  Come into the Eco-Experience Building and say hello!

    Read more about our state fair activities here.

  • Support Windustry at Climate Ride 2014!

    Did you know that Windustry is a beneficiary for Climate Ride?

    August 2014. This fall, Climate Ride will be biking  to promote and support organizations related to sustainability, climate, clean energy, and more. There is still time to sign up for the following rides.  The Midwest route is brand new this year!

    Midwest Climate Ride
    When: September 6-9, 2014
    Where: Grand Rapids, MI to Chicago, IL
    (register here)

    NYC-DC Climate Ride
    When: September 20-24, 2014
    Where: NYC to Washington D.C.
    (register here)

  • 2014 REAP Funding Announced

    *May 5, 2014  – The USDA announced funding for the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). REAP provides grants and loan guarantees to farmers, ranchers and rural small businesses for a wide range of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies. You can see the official notice here

    This funding announcement is the first of two rounds of funding to be announced this year. The available funds total $28.2 million. Later this year, the USDA will release the final REAP rule and announce the mandatory funding from the Farm Bill of $50 million. The ultimate share of this funding between grants and loan guarantees will be determined by public demand.

    The USDA application deadlines follow:

     Applications involving grantsJuly 7, 2014
     Guaranteed loan only applicationsJuly 31, 2014

    The first step for potential applicants with project plans in hand is to contact the USDA Rural Development state energy coordinator. It is important to work with these staff, who can help you through the application process. It is also important to connect with your energy coordinators early in the process – and well in advance of deadlines — as they become very busy.

    Due to changes in the new Farm Bill, there will be no funding for flexible fuel blender pumps or feasibility studies. Due to the late funding notice (after April 1), there will be no funding in 2014 for Energy Audits or Renewable Energy Development Assistance. 

    Editorial Note: USDA Continues Loan Guarantee Preference

    The funding notice includes a number of regrettable and unneeded preferences for loan guarantees over grants that complicate the program, such as longer timelines and preferred treatment of applications. The USDA’s continuing preference for loan guarantees is quite odd given the well-established disinterest from the public in loan guarantees. Loan guarantees primarily help bankers and actually cost money to the project owner while not lowering financing costs. We would prefer the agency to drop this preference and focus on the program mission.

    *Adapted from the Environmental Law and Policy Center announcement.

  • Obama Administration on Rural Tour

    WASHINGTON D.C., June 30, 2009 - President Obama announced the launch of his Administration's Rural Tour to hold discussions on how communities, states, and the federal government can work together to help strengthen rural America. During July, August and September top Administration officials will fan out across the nation to hold a series of discussion on how to best implement programs and funds made available by The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

    Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack on Rural Tour in Kentucky in May
    Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack on
    Rural Tour in Kentucky in May.

    The Rural Tour is a continuation of a program begun by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that had recently held forums across the country. Cabinet members on the Rural Tour led by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack include Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, and others.

    "A healthy American economy depends on a prosperous rural America," President Obama said. "Rural America is vast and diverse, and different communities face different challenges and opportunities. That's why we're going out to hear directly from the people of rural America about their needs and concerns and what my Administration can do to support them."

    These events will serve as listening sessions to focus on such issues as broad-based rural health, economic development, infrastructure, education, energy, natural resources, and agriculture. Officials will share some of the Administration's ideas about how to nurture strong, robust, and vibrant rural communities, and they will report back to the President about the state of rural America and what the Administration can do to strengthen it.

    Rural Tour Schedule

    July 1 - Vice President Joe Biden and Secretaries Gary Locke and TomVilsack will travel to Wattsburg, PA, to discuss rural broadband.

    July 16 - Secretaries Ray LaHood and Tom Vilsack will travel to La Crosse, WI, to discuss rural economic development.

    July 18 - Secretaries Steven Chu and Tom Vilsack will travel to Ringgold, VA, to discuss green jobs and a new energy economy, with a focus on weatherization and carbon sequestration.

    July 20 - Secretaries Kathleen Sebelius, Eric Shinseki, Hilda Solis and Tom Vilsack will travel to St. John's Parish, LA, to discuss rural healthcare.

    August 12 - Secretaries Steven Chu, Shaun Donovan, Arne Duncan, Ken Salazar and Tom Vilsack will travel to Bethel, AK, to discuss rural infrastructure, green jobs and a new energy economy, as well as climate change.

    August 16 - Secretaries Ken Salazar and Tom Vilsack will travel to Zanesville, OH, to discuss green jobs and a new energy economy, with a focus on renewable energies.

    August 17 - Secretaries Arne Duncan and Tom Vilsack will travel to Hamlet, NC, to discuss rural education.

    September 28 - Secretaries Ken Salazar and Tom Vilsack will travel to Scottsbluff, NE, to discuss production agriculture.

    September 30 - Secretaries Shaun Donovan and Tom Vilsack will travel to Las Cruces, NM, to discuss rural infrastructure.

    For additional information visit the Rural Tour web site.

  • Great Lakes Tall Tower Wind Monitoring Project

    Grant Applications are now being received for the Great Lakes Tall Tower Wind Monitoring project. The project is funded through the U.S. Department of Energy.

    The program's scope of work requires the State of Wisconsin to use the DOE funds to award a total of two grants for:

    Lake Michigan Project: collect and analyze 12 months of tall tower data from an existing 100 meter tall site within .5 miles of Lake Michigan

    Lake Erie Project: collect and analyze 12 months of tall tower data from an existing 100 meter tall site within .5 miles of Lake Erie

    For more information about the grant application and selection process, please contact Preston Schutt, WI PSC, Preston.Schutte@psc.state.wi.us or 608-266-1462



  • Department of Energy Seeks Input on Wind Energy Workforce Development Roadmap

    U.S. Department of Energy

    Washington DC — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a Request For Information (RFI) to gain public input on the development of a Wind Energy Workforce Roadmap, which will provide details on the current workforce landscape in the wind industry as well as future steps necessary to train and develop a green workforce for the sector.

    The purpose of the Roadmap is to establish the policy objectives and overall direction that workforce development efforts throughout the wind industry should assume as it moves forward. This RFI provides leaders from academia, industry, and government with the opportunity to provide insight and guidance to DOE as the nation ramps up its wind energy production. A draft Roadmap document has been developed, and the public may provide comments on the initial draft or may provide alternative or additional viewpoints.

    This RFI does not constitute a request for specific project proposals. The information being sought under this RFI is intended to assist DOE and the wind industry in maximizing ongoing efforts to spark interest and skills development in the growing wind industry.

    The information collected may be used for internal DOE planning and decision-making to align future activities under the Wind and Water Power Program with the Administration's goals for increased use of renewable energy and domestic job creation.

    DOE will not reimburse costs associated with preparing any documents for this RFI, and there is no guarantee that a funding opportunity announcement will be issued subsequent to this RFI.

    Comments must be provided by no later than July 30, 2010. View the full text of the RFI on the FedConnect website


  • Windustry Awarded USDA Rural Business Enterprise Grant to develop a Small Wind Bulk-Buy program


    Windustry was recently awarded a $275,000 Rural Business Enterprise Grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development office.

    Windustry gained the support of the USDA in 2009 to launch a national Landowner Wind Energy Association Resource Center to technical support to rural communities seeking to develop community owned wind energy projects. The Center has been conducting feasibility studies to develop rural wind energy projects Montana, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

    The new RBEG grant will expand our work to southern Minnesota.to work with the Region Nine Development Commission’s Renewable Energy Task Force to develop a Small Wind Bulk-Buy program across nine counties.

    Windustry is honored to have received support from the USDA for two years in a row and looks forward to working with a dynamic consortium of partners to promote Community Wind and Small Wind across America.

  • Mid Atlantic Conference Keynote Speakers

    Jacques Beaudry-Losique

    Wind & Water Program Manager, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. Department of Energy

    Jacques Beaudry-Losique

    Jacques Beaudry-Losique was appointed in April 2010 as the Program Manager for the Wind & Water for the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Jacques held multiple senior positions at EERE since 2005, including two years as Deputy-Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy and three years leading major clean energy programs. Prior to DOE, Jacques has held senior executive positions for major U.S. corporations and also has many years of experience as a management consultant with McKinsey and Company. In his keynote address at the conference, Mr. Beaudry-Losique will draw from the Program’s recent studies on Deployment Barriers to Distributed Wind Energy.

    Jessica Zufolo

    Deputy Administrator of the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

    Jessica Zufolo

    Jessica Zufolo was appointed by President Barack Obama to be Deputy Administrator of the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). RUS provides leadership and capital to upgrade, expand, maintain, and replace America's vast rural electric infrastructure, as well as its water and telecommunications infrastructures.  The Program makes loans and loan guarantees to finance the construction of electricity distribution, transmission and generation, including on- and off-grid renewable energy systems.

    John Hanger

    Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and national leader on green economy, environment and energy issues

    John Hanger

    John Hanger is strongly affiliated with securing the law requiring Pennsylvania investor-owned utilities to offer net metering (up to 3 MW to nonresidential customers and 50 kW to residential customers). He has held numerous leadership positions, including Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and Chair of the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority. He was the founding President of Citizens of Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture). Mr Hanger continues to work on green economy, environment and energy issues.

    James Woolsey

    Former CIA Director and energy independence advocate

    James Woolsey

    James Woolsey, an energy independence advocate and former CIA Director, has prepared a video address for Community Wind across America participants. National security and distributed energy frame his argument for developing all forms of renewable energy, supportive legislation, and forcing competition between petroleum products and other fuels. These measures, says Woolsey, are critical to a security strategy “to move away from oil,” which currently funds enemy states, and lays Americans vulnerable to possible terrorist strikes and disruptions.

     Read more about the Community Wind across America conference

  • Community Benefits at the Heart of Mid Atlantic Wind Conference in State College, PA

    Windustry is pleased to announce the program for  Community Wind across America regional conference in State College, PA, February 8-9, 2011.

    In a program designed to address the most current issues and best practices in distributed wind energy development, regional and national speakers take up the subjects of growing the market, local involvement and investment, public policy and national energy independence. Breakout sessions delve into the specifics of what's needed to advance and build Community and Small Wind energy projects in the Mid-Atlantic Region.

    When: February 8-9, 2011
    Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, State College, PA


    "In this conference we demonstrate that local communities can benefit from distributed wind development while, as a nation, we diversify our home grown energy sources. We’re inviting new folks into the wind and renewable energy conversation and providing the opportunity for interested individuals to build a network of distributed energy experts dedicated to new industry, jobs and economic growth."
    —Lisa Daniels, Windustry Executive Director

    National Leaders Speak to Current Issues

    Distributed Energy and Energy Security frame keynote addresses from Jacques Beaudry-Losique, Wind and Water Program Manager, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, US DOE; Jessica Zufolo, Deputy Administrator for Rural Utilities Service, USDA; John Hanger, former Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, and James Woolsey, former CIA Director and energy independence advocate.

    Stories From the Field Illustrate Cooperation and Innovative Business Models at work

    LCSWMA - PPL Wind Turbines
    Wind turbine erected at Frey Farm Landfill, Conestoga, PA for Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority by PPL Renewable Energy, September 2010.

    Regional success stories to be highlighted include the Frey Farm Wind project in Lancaster County. Jim Warner, CEO of Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority (LCSWM), will give an on-the-ground perspective of this wind energy project, describing the unique partnership between LCSWM Authority and PPL Renewable Energy, and what it took to get it going.

    Robert Michael Specter, CBO for University of Delaware (UD), will also be on hand to highlight the wind development on UD Lewes Campus that meets its electricity needs and works as an educational and research tool. Guests will also hear from Roy Butler who has owned and operated a small wind turbine to power his home and business for many years.

    Two Days - Two Tracks

    The conference will feature eighteen program sessions that examine the details of locally-owned, utility-scale and residential wind energy development, including: Emerging Business Models, Mid-sized Wind Turbines, Education and Community Engagement, Permitting for Wind Projects in the Mid Atlantic Region, and Examples of How Small Wind can Work for You.

    Day one ends with a reception and screening of "Wind Uprising," a documentary that chronicles the developmental saga of an entrepreneur and an engineer who broke trail for wind energy in their home state of Utah. They worked through legislative barriers, fickle investors, power purchasing conundrums, and a 'Not In My Back Yard' resistance from area residents.

    Attendees include rural landowners, community leaders, elected officials, clean energy advocates, state and federal agencies, zoning and permitting officials, wind developers, educators and academics, economic development professionals, and national leaders.

    This event follows Windustry’s 2010 conferences in the Rocky Mountain and Midwest regions, where attendees remarked on the strong networking environment and high professional quality of the national and regional leaders present. More Community Wind across America events will be announced in 2011.

    REGISTER online for this conference or phone 612-870-3477.