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Conference to discuss growing interest in wind, solar energy

By Staff | Jan 29, 2013

SIOUX CITY – A growing interest in alternative energy sources, sparked by soaring oil prices and the development of large wind farms in northwest Iowa, has raised many questions about wind and solar energy.

To address this important topic, Iowa State University Extension in Woodbury and Plymouth counties, along with other partner organizations, is presenting a Wind and Solar Energy Conference from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Feb. 26 at the Sioux City Convention Center, 801 Fourth St., in Sioux City.

Registration is $35 by Feb. 15 and includes morning refreshments and lunch. Registrations received after the Feb. 15 deadline will be $45.

“Iowa has become a leader in the nation in the development of alternative energy sources, including the exciting fields of wind and solar energy,” said Sherry McGill, ISU Extension regional director. “This conference will explore what is happening currently in wind and solar energy.”

The conference will help business and industry leaders, home owners, individuals, farmers, and schools better understand wind and solar energy and explore the potential for the future. The conference will also provide additional information about alternative sources of electricity.

As a conference highlight, Brent Nelson, senior planner for Sioux City, will present on the regulations regarding installation of wind turbines and solar panels in Sioux City.

An overview of wind and solar energy resources in Iowa will be given by Bill Haman, industrial program manager from the Iowa Energy Center in Ames.

In addition, Jason Gideon from Kirkwood College will present how to install solar panels.

Other topics to be covered include planning and zoning, real life wind and solar experiences, financing options including loans, grants, tax benefits and rebates for Iowa’s expanding renewable energy industry.

Conference sponsors are the City of Sioux City, ISU Extension-Woodbury and Plymouth counties, U.S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development, MidAmerican Energy, Touchstone Energy Cooperatives of Western Iowa, Woodbury County Farm Bureau, Woodbury County Rural Economic Development, and the Iowa Energy Center.

Businesses interested in being a vendor should contact Woodbury County Extension office at (712) 276-2157.

Conference brochures, registration forms and additional conference information are available on the ISU Extension-Woodbury County website at: www.extension.iastate.edu/woodbury.

For additional information contact McGill at (712) 276-2157.

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