Oklahoma Power Alliance releases new data about state’s growth in clean power sources
(OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.)–Oklahoma Power Alliance officials announced today that renewable energy provided a record 40.2% of all the state’s energy mix in 2019.
At the State Capitol for its annual Clean Energy Day, the Oklahoma Power Alliance also released updated data regarding the state’s leading position among energy producers in the Southwest Power Pool. More than 80 participants joined the Oklahoma Power Alliance to advocate for the renewable energy industry and its project developers, investors, landowners, manufacturers and suppliers.
“This data is compelling and tells a strong story about how Oklahoma is a national leader in renewable energy production,” said Mark Yates, vice president of Advanced Power Alliance and director of policy in Oklahoma. “Wind power now comprises 40.2% of Oklahoma’s total energy production, second only to natural gas which makes up 46.3%. Clean energy is a partner to the state’s abundant power resources of natural gas, hydro, and coal.”
Oklahoma is ranked second in the United States for wind energy generation and ranked third in the nation for installed wind capacity. With more than $20 billion invested in the state so far, the wind energy industry is ranked among the top three taxpayers in 19 Oklahoma counties and 65 Oklahoma school districts. Additionally, the wind energy industry supports the Oklahoma agriculture industrythrough approximately $51 million in land lease payments to farmers and ranchers throughout 26 counties.
“Our state is known for ‘the best wind in the world,’ and now that we have harnessed its power and reaped its economic benefits, we must continue to diversify our energy portfolio. Next, Oklahoma has significant opportunities on the horizon through the development of solar energy and the growing power storage industry,” Yates said. “These investments continue to transform Oklahoma’s rural economies by offering new career opportunities, circulating new income, creating sales tax revenue, and providing valuable ad valorem throughout a county.”
The positive economic impact is being realized throughout Oklahoma with the successful attraction of mega-employers seeking access to abundant renewable power sources. Global corporations are signing long-term power purchase agreements with renewable energy producers to transition business operations to 100% clean energy.
“Two of the visionary corporations at the forefront of the U.S. renewable energy revolution are Google and Amazon, both of which are making significant capital investments in Oklahoma,” Yates said. “The Google Data Center in Pryor recently announced another $600 million investment in its facility. This expansion brings the company’s total investment to more than $3 billion in Oklahoma. Meanwhile, Amazon has broken ground on Tulsa’s upcoming Amazon Distribution Center that, when complete, will equal a $130 million investment. In Oklahoma City, Amazon has opened a delivery center and is building a similar fulfillment center.”
During its Clean Energy Day, the Oklahoma Power Alliance recognized individuals who continue to support the growth of clean power in the state, including Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell, Sen. Kim David, Rep. Mike Sanders, Rep. Brian Hill and Kathy Jackson of Oklahoma KidWind. Additionally, Lt. Gov. Matt Pinnell addressed attendees regarding the importance of renewables as a part of Oklahoma’s energy mix.
“The manifest growth of renewable energy in Oklahoma is easy to see,” says Jeff Clark, president of the Advanced Power Alliance, the parent organization of the Oklahoma Power Alliance. “States throughout the Midwest continue to aggressively compete for new projects and investment from our members. As noted, renewable energy attracts additional employer investment as well as financially supports the agriculture industry and commodity exports.”
The Journal Record: Wind power’s share of state electricity production grows to 40%