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Why are the top three wind energy producing states all red?

Texas, Iowa, and Oklahoma. You'd expect "green" states like California to be leading the charge. I know wind speed is greatest in the flyover states, but there is plenty of wind in Washington, Oregon, and California. Is it all for show?

Update:

Are you kidding me, Anon? California has the third most rural land behind Alaska and Texas.

6 Answers

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  • 2 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    California does well with solar, because it can be put on individual houses, schools, and businesses unobtrusively  Wind generally doesn't make sense in those places, because communities don't like a tall, noisy wind turbine next door.  Besides steady wind, utility wind farms need cheap land to be profitable.  There are sites like that in California, to be sure - just not as many as in the great plains.  Actually, at #4, California is in the same league as #2 Iowa and #3 Oklahoma.  Texas is by far the breakaway leader, with more installed capacity than the next 3 states combined.  According to the article cited below, this is attributed to a push by their governor in the early 2000's.

    California is my home state, and I know we have been pushing solar for quite a while, now.  In the early 2000's, we had state incentives (in addition to the federal) to install solar, and in fact, we put it on our house in 2006.  While the grid at our house has generally been stable, one advantage of solar is that we could theoretically have power at least a few hours a day if the grid ever did go down.

  • 2 months ago

    My first instinct was to tell you that wind is caused by hot air rising and red states produce a lot of hot air. However, this is a teachable moment and the plains states have the steadiest, most dependable wind. Coastal states do pretty well too, in that regard but I think the wind over the plains is stronger, on average.

  • ?
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Oklahoma is not always a red state. It has had democratic governors in the past. As is true in many states, the cities and large towns tend to be Democratic and the small towns and rural areas Republican. The panhandles of Oklahoma and Texas are usually ignored unless There is a state election coming up. Mire than once both panhandles have seriously considered exceeding and joining to form the state of Sequoia. 

    Oklahoma was very fossil fuel dependent until 1982. By 1966. The state legislature and governor realized Oklahoma had to diversify economically. Keep in mind that the savings and loans?crisis?started on July 2, 1982 when the Penn Square State Bank in Oklahoma City declared bankruptcy.

    Then there's Louisiana?where the Southern Democrats?still have some power. I grew up in BOTH states. 

    Eastern Oklahoma is NOT rural grasslands. 

  • 2 months ago

    first reference, top states are MA, CA, NY, IL, NJ

    2nd ref, top states are TX, IA, OK, CA, KA

    coincidence

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Because they’re rural grasslands and have plenty of room for windmill farms. 

  • ?
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    As long is China and India are not called upon to reduce carbon, and Teresa Heinz' husband flies all over the world in her private jet to pretend he is actually the powerful man he wants to be, it is all for show  It became a show when they learned how to monetize the weather.  

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