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Wisconsin’s Renewable Energy Sector Has Room To Grow, Survey Finds

Industry Currently Has Just Shy Of 7K Workers

Lester Public Library (CC-BY-NC-SA)

A new report shows Wisconsin’s renewable energy sector employs 6,800 people, but its authors say the state could do more to encourage growth.

The study is from the Environmental Law and Policy Center. It contacted 500 state companies in what it calls the “clean energy supply chain.”

Andy Olsen is a senior policy advisor for the group. He said Wisconsin has a lot of strengths in its renewable energy manufacturing and constructing sectors. But he said the state is getting a reputation for being “difficult” in terms of regulations.

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“We know that conservatives value renewable energy because it supports energy freedom, energy choice, and environmental stewardship,” said Olsen. “So we need to remove renewable energy from the political battlefield and make it a core economic development strategy.”

The report also criticized the Public Service Commission’s recent move to let three utilities increase the fixed rate portion of electric bills. Utilities say the increases help maintain infrastructure.