Study Finds Wind Produces 10,000 Jobs in Texas

John Davis

A new study shows that wind energy has produced 10,000 jobs in Texas… and new infrastructure to carry more power could add another 40,000+ jobs to the Lone Star State.

North American Windpower reports that the Perryman Group economic study, which comes as the American Wind Energy Association gets ready to host Windpower 2010 in Dallas next week, shows the jobs for which wind is already responsible and the prospect of jobs that would be created building new transmission lines under the Competitive Renewable Energy Zones (CREZ) proposal approved by the Public Utility Commission (PUC):

“This report answers any questions related to the impact the wind industry has on jobs in Texas, which is substantial,” says Paul Sadler, executive director of The Wind Coalition. “Nearly 10,000 Texans have jobs in wind, whether in manufacturing, headquarters, construction or maintenance and support. Wind energy is big business in Texas, and under CREZ, its growth will be equivalent to the economic impact of air transportation on the low end and the computer and electronic sector on the high end.”

Of the nearly 10,000 jobs in Texas tied to wind energy, Perryman estimates 3,876 are permanent jobs within the industry.

When jobs tied to construction, royalties and other indirect impacts are considered, the wind industry produces roughly one job per megawatt. CREZ alone is estimated to expanded business activity in Texas by $30.6 billion and create 383,972 person-years of employment. This economic activity leads to notable incremental tax receipts over the development period, according to the study.

The construction and development of CREZ is also expected to create $1.6 billion in state revenues and $329 million in local revenues.