Iowa Ranked as Top State for Businesses Interested in Renewable Energy

posted by Nathaniel Baer on Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Iowa’s leadership on clean energy sparked another top ranking in a recent national report. The Corporate Clean Energy Procurement Index has ranked Iowa #1 overall among states for facilitating business purchases or ownership and production of renewable energy. Iowa’s top score beat neighboring Illinois as well as New Jersey, California, and Texas in the top five. 

Iowa earned points for adopting policies to support business ownership of renewable energy and for MidAmerican Energy’s practice of offering purchase options for large customers. Key policies include net metering, interconnection, third-party purchasing, and rate design (no fixed charges for customers with on-site generation).

The Council has actively supported adopting, maintaining, and improving these policies in recent years and more work lies ahead. As this report makes clear, these policies are important for large businesses – in addition to farmers, homeowners, schools and colleges, local governments, and other customers. 

Iowa’s top score is also the result of MidAmerican Energy’s agreements with large customers to provide wind power, including Facebook and Google. MidAmerican’s significant wind development in recent years have benefited all customers – and Iowa’s clean energy economy – in multiple ways. The Council has actively supported MidAmerican’s wind projects in dockets at the Iowa Utilities Board. 

A key benefit from Iowa’s policies and MidAmerican’s wind projects is attracting businesses with clean energy commitments to locate in Iowa – and bring jobs and capital investment with them. 

In another sign of significant progress, Google recently announced that it will achieve its 100% renewable energy commitment for all operations in 2017. Google has data center facilities in Iowa as well as wind energy purchases from Iowa wind. Google’s ability to scale its use of renewable energy in Iowa is a great example. As the Corporate Clean Energy Procurement Index report makes clear, Iowa is currently the best place for large customers to set and achieve ambitious clean energy goals, whether through on-site use of renewables or purchases from a local utility. We hope to see many more large customers move towards 100% renewable energy. 

Note: The Corporate Clean Energy Procurement Index was released by the Retail Industry Leaders Association and the Information Technology Industrial Council in collaboration with Clean Edge, Inc. The news release with quotes from Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds and the full report can be found here

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About The Author

Nathaniel joined the Council in 2007. He researches and advocates for policies to expand solar, wind, transmission and energy efficiency, and coordinates the Council’s coalition of allies on energy and climate issues. Nathaniel currently serves on the Midwest Power Sector Collaborative, a s ... read more