As companies invest more and more money into renewable sources we keep hearing about significant energy goals being met them. Some of these stories are pretty incredible to say the least and were even unimaginable to think possible not too many years ago. This constant positive flow of positive renewable energy goals being met has to have fans of wind, and other renewables jumping up and down with excitement. 

The latest energy company to announce big happening on the renewable energy front is MidAmerican Energy out of Iowa. Over the years they have made big investments into wind energy across the state and with their latest big investment the company hopes to meet 100% of their energy needs with wind power by 2021. It appears the companies ambitious energy goal that was set in 2016 is on schedule to be met. 

Who is MidAmerican Energy? 

MidAmerican is an investment owned energy company that is headquartered out of Des Moines, Iowa. It serves some almost 1 million customers across 2/3 of Iowa and also portions of Nebraska, Illinois and South Dakota. Among its most significant investors is none other than Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett. 

As of right now the company has made significant investment in wind energy. With some 27 wind farms across the state and over 2000 wind turbines it can currently meet about 70% of its energy needs by wind generated energy alone. Currently total energy production of the wind turbines comes out to around 4,400 Megawatts.  

The rest of the companies energy demands are met by other sources such as coal, nuclear and natural gas that are still filling necessary power gaps. 

MidAmerican’s Newest Wind Energy Investment 

In order to meet its 100% wind energy goal by the year 2021 MidAmerican needed to make another significant investment to up the number of wind farms it currently operates. The latest project which they announced is a 922 million dollar investment that will add another 591 Megawatts of energy that is generated solely by wind power.  

According to the company spokesperson, CEO Adam Wright, the company will meet 90% of its energy goal by 2020 and is easily on pace to meet its 100% wind produced energy goal by 2021. The company will still need to rely on alternate energy producing sources on days the wind is still but that does not happen very often at the Iowa wind farm locations. 

MidAmerican’s Renewable Energy Achievement is a 1st 

With its latest investment MidAmerican has now invested over 12 billion dollars into renewable wind energy to meet its lofty wind energy production goals. The fast timeframe on which its investments in wind energy are paying off is impressive to say the least. If the company does hit its 100% wind energy production goal in 2021 it will be a milestone event. They will be the first investor-owned utility to meet 100% of its energy production needs using all renewable energy sources. 

Of course MidAmerican’s latest wind energy investment project must still be approved by the state but that’s not expected to be a problem given its economic impact. The new project is expected to create some 300 construction jobs and around 30 new maintenance jobs at the new wind farms. 

There is a small opposition group that claims the wind farms are too noisy and negatively impact the nearby farmland near where they are placed. These opposition groups have never gained much traction with those in the state responsible for approving the new wind farms. 

Renewable Wind Energy Means Lower Electrical Rates 

One of the surprising benefits of using renewable wind energy is that it has actually helped keep electric rates down despite the significant investments that have gone into building these huge wind farms. On average, MidAmerican’s customers’ rates are 37% lower than what most American electrical consumers pay. The company states this is made possible by the fact they no longer need to purchase huge amounts of expensive non-renewable energy sources in order to meet electrical demand. 

MidAmerican has certainly created an energy model that has to have other investment-owned utilities seriously rethinking the ways they too can increase their use of solar, wind and other renewables to better serve their customers’ needs and create more profit for them at the same time. 

 

 Sources: 

https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/money/business/2018/05/30/iowa-midamerican-energy-wind-capacity-enough-cover-all-consumers-use/655441002/

http://iowapublicradio.org/post/midamerican-wind-energy-cover-100-percent-iowa-consumer-use#stream/0

 

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