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Senator Tina Smith receives “U.S. Wind Champion Award”

August 12, 2020 By American Wind Energy Association Blazing Star Wind Project, Minnesota


Washington D.C. – The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) today recognized Senator Tina Smith (D-Minnesota) for her exemplary support of American wind power, which represents 19 percent of Minnesota’s electric generation, 20 active manufacturing facilities, and billions of dollars in investments in the state’s economy. AWEA and our members are proud to give out this award today and proud that Minnesota has proclaimed this week American Wind Week.

“Thank you to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) for naming me a 2020 U.S. Wind Champion. I believe that wind energy is essential to our country’s future because it’s an economic engine, it’s good for the environment, and it’s the cheapest way to add new electricity to the electrical grid. That's why I introduced the bipartisan Wind Energy Research and Development Act to improve wind energy technology and the Clean Energy Standard Act to ratchet up wind energy deployment across the nation. I'll keep working to move wind energy forward, and I'm grateful to have AWEA as a partner in this fight.” – Senator Tina Smith.

“Since joining Congress in 2018, Senator Tina Smith hasn’t wasted any time championing wind energy. Her impressive record includes: introducing the Clean Energy Standard Act of 2019, which would help our nation reach net-zero emissions by 2050; introducing the Wind Energy Research and Development Act, which would provide policy direction to the Department of Energy in alignment with AWEA-identified research and development priorities for the wind industry; and signing onto a 2020 letter to the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee in support of robustly funding the Department of Energy Wind Energy Technologies Office. Senator Smith has been extremely proactive and has frequently spoken out in support of American wind energy. She exemplifies exactly the kind of leadership our country needs during these uncertain times and is helping to ensure that wind energy continues contributing to a cleaner and more economically sound future. On behalf of AWEA and our 1000+ members, I’m honored to recognize Senator Smith as a 2020 U.S. Wind Champion.” – Tom Kiernan, AWEA CEO.

“We appreciate all of the support Sen. Tina Smith has provided to the wind energy industry and the positive economic and environmental impact we make. Minnesota has a long history of success in wind, with many of the leading national firms headquartered in the state. We commend and congratulate the senator for earning a very well-deserved award.” – Tim Maag, Mortenson vice president and general manager. 

“Sen. Smith has been a true champion for American wind. She recognizes the ability of our growing industry to create jobs and new investment in rural communities across her state and the nation. On behalf of our employees and landowners in Clay, Lincoln, Sherburne and Rock counties, I thank Sen. Smith for her leadership.” – Georgios Papadimitriou, Head of Enel Green Power in the US and Canada.

“Senator Smith understands renewable energy’s valuable role for Minnesota’s farming communities. Her leadership in Washington demonstrates her commitment to accelerate the clean energy transition for our environment and economy.” – Kate O’Hair, EDF Renewables VP Development North Region. 

Media Contact: Sam Brock, 202.341.1332, press@awea.org

AWEA is the national trade association for the U.S. wind industry, the largest source of renewable energy in the country. We represent 1,000 member companies, 120,000 jobs in the U.S. economy, and a nationwide workforce located across all 50 states. AWEA serves as a powerful voice for how wind works for America. Members include global leaders in wind power and energy development, turbine manufacturing, and component and service suppliers. They gather each year at the Western Hemisphere’s most efficient and targeted event for utility-scale renewable companies, the AWEA CLEANPOWER Conference & Exhibition, next in Indianapolis, June 7-10, 2021. An outgrowth of the AWEA WINDPOWER Conference & Exhibition, CLEANPOWER is the first trade show focused exclusively on the utility-scale renewable power sector, bringing together all the major developers, utilities, OEMs, suppliers, and buyers under one roof. Visit AWEA’s website to learn more about the enormous economic benefits wind power brings to America and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.