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Penn. wind power is helping D.C. with carbon emissions

To help lower its carbon footprint, Washington D.C. is taking power from Pennsylvania in the form of wind.

The District of Columbia has cut a deal with the Iberdrola Renewables, a Spanish company, for wind power from Iberdrola’s South Chestnut Wind Power Project located in Fayette County, Pennsylvania. The power will be generated by the projects 23 wind turbines.

According to Washington D.C.’s Mayor Muriel Bowser, this is the “largest wind power deal of its kind ever entered into by an American city.” He also explained how the deal will save D.C. nearly $45 million over the next 20 years, and the power received from the wind project will equal enough electricity to power an estimated 12,000 homes.

Iberdrola spokesperson Paul Copleman explained D.C. will also be purchasing Renewable Energy Credits from the company, which is like other agreements the company has with other clients. Iberdrola’s other clients include Ohio State University, Amazon Web Services, Google and Yahoo. Copleman commented on the company’s deal with D.C.:

We see these types of direct retail customers interested in wind energy for lots of different reasons … In DC they talked about the savings, they talked about their interest in going green.

As reported by State Impact Pennsylvania, “The cost of wind is at its lowest point in history, the Department of Energy reported this week. Though it still only accounts for five percent of the country’s electric generation, wind power has almost doubled in the U.S. since 2010, according to the Energy Information Administration. Much of that boom was aided by a federal production tax credit for wind turbines, which Congress allowed to expire last year.”

According to the American Wind Energy Association, wind generated power is responsible for 1.6 percent of Pennsylvania’s electricity.

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