A transmission project to carry wind energy from Iowa to Illinois passed another hurdle this week with the awarding of a utility pole manufacturing contract to Sabre Industries of Sioux City. It’s part of the Clean Line Energy Project that has a total capital investment of $ 10 billion. Former Iowa Wind Energy Association Executive Director Harold Prior who led that group when the project began says the economic benefits of that wind transmission will be huge for Northwest Iowa.
Prior says farmer landowners will see a direct economic benefit from the Clean Line Project as will the local communities from where the line starts in O’Brien County all across Iowa to Illinois.
Prior says most of the land leases will be for twenty years paying an average of $ 10,000 per wind turbine per year. The land taken out of production for one wind turbine and access road will total less than one acre. Prior says Clean Line is awaiting approval from Iowa and Illinois regulatory agencies and he expects that by the end of the year.