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ACORE’s Renewable Energy in the 50 States: Midwestern Region Report Illustrates How America’s Agricultural Heartland Has Become Hub for Renewable Energy Development

Twelve Midwestern states home to over 80% of domestic biofuel production capacity

For Immediate Release – October 21, 2013

Washington, DC - The Midwestern Region Report, the second portion of the American Council On Renewable Energy’s (ACORE) 6th annual Renewable Energy in the 50 States report, was released today. The second in a four-part series, this portion focuses on the renewable energy sector in the twelve Midwestern states (IA, IL, IN, KS, MI, MN, MO, NE, ND, OH, SD, WI). The report is a review of state energy policies and programs, investment, and market openness as they relate to the current state of renewable energy and its potential for further growth. This September the Western Region Report was released, and both the Northeast and the Southeast Region Reports will come out within the next few months.

“The past couple of years have seen an impressive increase in renewable energy sector activity throughout the American Midwest. Eight of the twelve states we examine in this new report have strong binding standards for renewable and/or clean energy, plus an additional three have non-binding goals,” explained Lesley Hunter, ACORE’s Research and Program Manager and lead author of the report. “With strong renewable portfolio standards in place, the political will to protect and expand them, and the market stability they bring, these states are certain to protect their large domestic market-share.”

According to the Midwestern Region Report, technologies suited for expansion in the region include biomass, wind, solar, hydropower, waste energy and biofuels, among other clean technologies. In addition, the Corn Belt boasts nine of the top ten biofuel states by production capacity, and is home to over 80% of current domestic biofuel production capacity. Despite these obvious advantages, the continued growth and investment in renewable fuels would be imperiled if the federal Renewable Fuel Standard is scaled back or repealed.

“The twelve states that comprise the American Midwest are home to nationally recognized bioenergy and wind energy resources. Furthermore, smaller-scale renewable energy sources are also experiencing growth in the region. Midwestern solar power capacity, for example, experienced a 150% jump in 2012,” continued Hunter. “State renewable portfolio standards have been the single largest driver of this growth and expansion. Only one state of our twelve – Nebraska – does not have any sort of binding/nonbinding standard. It is therefore no surprise to see Nebraska come in last for renewable power in the Midwestern States Installed Capacity Rankings.”

Renewable Energy in the 50 States: Midwestern Region provides an executive summary on the status of renewable energy implementation at the state-level. Compiling financial, renewable energy resource potentials, and market and policy information in an easily-accessed online format, the report is intended to be an executive summary for all who are interested in the highlights of the renewable energy sector in the states. Investment information in this report was provided by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

ACORE’s 2013 Renewable Energy in the 50 States: Midwestern Region can be viewed here.


About ACORE:
ACORE, a 501(c)(3) non-profit membership organization, is dedicated to building a secure and prosperous America with clean, renewable energy. ACORE seeks to advance renewable energy through finance, policy, technology, and market development and is concentrating its member focus in 2013 on National Defense & Security, Power Generation & Infrastructure, and Transportation. Additional information is available at

Media Contact:
Tim McHugh
(202) 507-4637

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