Letter to the Editor: Chamber Leaders Express Support for Economic Benefits of Wind

8/19/2019

To the Editor:

As we celebrate American Wind Week in North Carolina, we express our gratitude to the N.C. General Assembly for preserving eastern North Carolina’s potential to benefit from the economic development opportunities the wind energy industry offers.

North Carolina is home to the 104-turbine Amazon Wind Farm, which created 500 jobs during construction, and now sustains 17 full-time jobs with an average salary of $80,000. Its existence is to be credited with hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax payments that benefit the county every year. Among those who stand to benefit from wind energy are eastern North Carolina’s farmers. Being a farmer can be a risky proposition, with fluctuations in commodity prices and unpredictable weather patterns that can lower crop yields. Renewable energy sited on farmland helps stabilize the income of those working hard to feed our state.

In addition to the Amazon Wind Farm, North Carolina is home to 26 manufacturing facilities that make components of wind turbines, which are used in projects across the nation and around the world. These manufacturers employ 600 North Carolinians, bringing in nearly $800 million in annual revenue to the state’s economy.

Clearly, the wind industry is helping North Carolina’s manufacturing sector, and is creating and sustaining good-paying jobs, boosting the state’s economy, and helping make our communities and clean energy economy stronger.

North Carolina, as well as some of our neighboring states, will have an opportunity to play an even larger role in the multi-billion dollar wind manufacturing business through the offshore wind supply chain. We look forward to learning more about offshore wind, the benefits of potential manufacturing and port opportunities, and understanding the economic development benefits offshore wind could bring.

 

Win Dale
Executive Director
Edenton-Chowan Chamber of Commerce
101 W. Water Street
Edenton, NC 27932

Karen Brown
President & CEO
Outer Banks Chamber of Commerce
101 Town Hall Drive
Kill Devils Hills, NC 27948