It is estimated that Iowa now gets as much as 20 percent of its electricity from wind turbines. So how has that affected the price Iowans pay for their power? The Iowa Policy Project last week released a report that shows that the price of electricity in Iowa is trending well below the national average:
One of the most common arguments for not addressing climate change and reducing greenhouse gas pollution is that the solutions are cost-prohibitive. However, amidst Iowa’s massive expansion of windpower, our average electricity prices have remained below the national average and in fact have not increased as quickly as the national average price in the last four years (2005 to 2008).
The data from the Energy Information Administration show Delaware's electricity prices climbing even faster that the U.S. average. Delaware could use some of the price stability that wind power seems to be providing Iowa.
1. The states with the most wind and solar on line...
The five states with the highest installed capacity are Texas, California, Iowa, Minnesota, and Oregon. By the end of 2010, these states had installed a cumulative 22.4 GW of wind and solar PV.
On average, rates in these states increased by 1.35˘/kWh over five years (or 3.2 percent annually)
The five states with the lowest installed capacity are South Carolina, Louisiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Alabama. By the end of 2010, these states had installed a cumulative 0.001 GW of wind and solar PV.
On average, rates in these states increased by 1.39˘/kWh over five years (or 4.0 percent annually)
On average across the U.S., by comparison, electricity prices increased by 1.8˘/kWh over five years (or 4.1 percent annually)