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Title: Economic Impacts of Wind Turbine Development in U.S. Counties

Abstract

The objective is to address the research question using post-project construction, county-level data, and econometric evaluation methods. Wind energy is expanding rapidly in the United States: Over the last 4 years, wind power has contributed approximately 35 percent of all new electric power capacity. Wind power plants are often developed in rural areas where local economic development impacts from the installation are projected, including land lease and property tax payments and employment growth during plant construction and operation. Wind energy represented 2.3 percent of the U.S. electricity supply in 2010, but studies show that penetrations of at least 20 percent are feasible. Several studies have used input-output models to predict direct, indirect, and induced economic development impacts. These analyses have often been completed prior to project construction. Available studies have not yet investigated the economic development impacts of wind development at the county level using post-construction econometric evaluation methods. Analysis of county-level impacts is limited. However, previous county-level analyses have estimated operation-period employment at 0.2 to 0.6 jobs per megawatt (MW) of power installed and earnings at $9,000/MW to $50,000/MW. We find statistically significant evidence of positive impacts of wind development on county-level per capita income from the OLS andmore » spatial lag models when they are applied to the full set of wind and non-wind counties. The total impact on annual per capita income of wind turbine development (measured in MW per capita) in the spatial lag model was $21,604 per MW. This estimate is within the range of values estimated in the literature using input-output models. OLS results for the wind-only counties and matched samples are similar in magnitude, but are not statistically significant at the 10-percent level. We find a statistically significant impact of wind development on employment in the OLS analysis for wind counties only, but not in the other models. Our estimates of employment impacts are not precise enough to assess the validity of employment impacts from input-output models applied in advance of wind energy project construction. The analysis provides empirical evidence of positive income effects at the county level from cumulative wind turbine development, consistent with the range of impacts estimated using input-output models. Employment impacts are less clear.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
Environmental Energy Technologies Division
OSTI Identifier:
1050450
Report Number(s):
LBNL-5027E-Poster
TRN: US201218%%844
DOE Contract Number:  
DE-AC02-05CH11231
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: The Agricultural and Applied Economic Association annual meetings in Pittsburgh on July 25th, 2011.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
17 WIND ENERGY; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; AVAILABILITY; CAPACITY; CONSTRUCTION; ECONOMETRICS; ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT; ECONOMIC IMPACT; ECONOMICS; ELECTRIC POWER; ELECTRICITY; EMPLOYMENT; EVALUATION; INCOME; LEASES; RURAL AREAS; WIND POWER; WIND POWER PLANTS; WIND TURBINES

Citation Formats

J., Brown, B., Hoen, E., Lantz, J., Pender, and R., Wiser. Economic Impacts of Wind Turbine Development in U.S. Counties. United States: N. p., 2011. Web.
J., Brown, B., Hoen, E., Lantz, J., Pender, & R., Wiser. Economic Impacts of Wind Turbine Development in U.S. Counties. United States.
J., Brown, B., Hoen, E., Lantz, J., Pender, and R., Wiser. Mon . "Economic Impacts of Wind Turbine Development in U.S. Counties". United States. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1050450.
@article{osti_1050450,
title = {Economic Impacts of Wind Turbine Development in U.S. Counties},
author = {J., Brown and B., Hoen and E., Lantz and J., Pender and R., Wiser},
abstractNote = {The objective is to address the research question using post-project construction, county-level data, and econometric evaluation methods. Wind energy is expanding rapidly in the United States: Over the last 4 years, wind power has contributed approximately 35 percent of all new electric power capacity. Wind power plants are often developed in rural areas where local economic development impacts from the installation are projected, including land lease and property tax payments and employment growth during plant construction and operation. Wind energy represented 2.3 percent of the U.S. electricity supply in 2010, but studies show that penetrations of at least 20 percent are feasible. Several studies have used input-output models to predict direct, indirect, and induced economic development impacts. These analyses have often been completed prior to project construction. Available studies have not yet investigated the economic development impacts of wind development at the county level using post-construction econometric evaluation methods. Analysis of county-level impacts is limited. However, previous county-level analyses have estimated operation-period employment at 0.2 to 0.6 jobs per megawatt (MW) of power installed and earnings at $9,000/MW to $50,000/MW. We find statistically significant evidence of positive impacts of wind development on county-level per capita income from the OLS and spatial lag models when they are applied to the full set of wind and non-wind counties. The total impact on annual per capita income of wind turbine development (measured in MW per capita) in the spatial lag model was $21,604 per MW. This estimate is within the range of values estimated in the literature using input-output models. OLS results for the wind-only counties and matched samples are similar in magnitude, but are not statistically significant at the 10-percent level. We find a statistically significant impact of wind development on employment in the OLS analysis for wind counties only, but not in the other models. Our estimates of employment impacts are not precise enough to assess the validity of employment impacts from input-output models applied in advance of wind energy project construction. The analysis provides empirical evidence of positive income effects at the county level from cumulative wind turbine development, consistent with the range of impacts estimated using input-output models. Employment impacts are less clear.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2011},
month = {7}
}

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