South Dakota has the fourth best wind energy potential in the country. The map below outlines the areas of the United States with the greatest wind energy potential.
Development of wind energy presents an economic opportunity for South Dakota. Farmers and ranchers can gain a much needed source of income without danger to their land and water offered by fossil fuel pipeline spills. The wind energy industry provides both manufacturing jobs and maintenance jobs within our state. The tax base is expanded with the addition of wind farms for rural counties who desperately need expanded tax revenues.
Wind Farm Environmental Benefits
If you ever visited a wind farm site you will notice:
- There is no odor.
- The air is clean and fresh.
- The wind turbines are quiet.
- They don’t leak any oil or gas.
- Very little land is lost for access.
- The lease paid to the farmer for siting the turbine on their land is far greater than the money made on raising a crop.
- Bird kills are far less from wind turbines than birds killed in oil refinery settling ponds, and large electrical transmission lines. New wind farm sites and the turbines are designed to reduce potential bird kills.
In South Dakota it is important that our state leaders focus on maximizing the economic benefits of wind on behalf of the people of this State. The South Dakota Sierra Club supports the development of wind energy as a sustainable, economic, and environmentally friendly resource for all of South Dakota.
Lincoln County Wind Farm
A large privately funded wind far is being developed in Lincoln County. Please click here to read more about the benefits of this renewable energy resource.