Wind farmers around Minnesota are celebrating today. Last night the state Legislature passed a bill requiring utility companies to generate at least a quarter of their power from renewable resources by 2025.
The state's largest electricity provider, Xcel Energy, would have to generate 30 percent of its power from renewable sources. Gov. Pawlenty has pledged to sign the bill into law. The law will require an estimated 6,000 megawatts of additional alternative energy--the equivilant of 3,000 new wind turbines in the state.
Former state senator and agriculture commissioner Jim Nichols farms on Buffalo Ridge in Southwestern Minnesota. He owns one of about 1,000 wind turbines already in operation in the state. He says the new law is good news for him and his neighbors in the windiest corner of the state.