Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Renewable Energy Soared in 2013, Creates Benefits in 2014

Photo of a Vestas Wind Turbine
Courtesy Creative Commons
Renewable energy hailed 2013 as an incredibly successful year. Public approval of clean energy has realized an increase across the board. In addition, sales and jobs in the renewable energy sector also experienced a boost.

On December 23rd, Vestas Wind Systems announced an order for wind turbines which made 2013 the manufacturer's second best year for sales in North America. Vestas announced 1,693 megawatts worth of turbine orders in the US and Canada, compare that number to the 252 megawatts worth of orders in 2012. (The wind energy sector suffered in 2012 due to concerns regarding the expiration of the Production Tax Credit.)

Vestas has four Colorado factories, which contributes to our state's employment opportunities and increase our capacity for clean energy. The factories in Colorado manufacture blades, nacelles and towers required to complete the orders. Vestas has said it plans to hire hundreds of workers in 2014 to fill jobs in its Windsor and Brighton locations.

The increase in capacity and jobs is surely related to the increase approval of renewable energy. Navigant Research, a Boulder based "market research and consulting team that provides in-depth analysis of global clean technology markets," recently issued a report on the subject. Navigant surveyed over 1,000 US adults for its annual "Energy and Environment Consumer Survey: Consumer Attitudes and Awareness toward 10 Clean Energy Concepts"

The report highlights that American's views of renewable energy had increased in 2013 from the year previous. Average support for all ten clean energy concepts rose to 51%, an increase from 44% in 2012. The most popular clean energy concept was solar energy, with an approval rating of 79%. Wind energy came in close second.

These reports make it very clear that renewable energy is a growing industry. There is a need for people to fill the jobs created and to study the laws and regulations affecting the manufacture of parts as well as the production of energy.

If you are excited about this growing area, take a look at our exciting renewable energy law course offerings and consider applying to the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program today!

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