Several State Lawmakers to Discuss Energy Needs at Nebraska Wind - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

Several State Lawmakers to Discuss Energy Needs at Nebraska Wind Conference

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This year's wind power conference will focus on the potential for building more wind farms in Nebraska.

The sixth-annual Nebraska Wind Conference will be held in Lincoln on Nov. 13-15 with several state lawmakers expected to attend.

Gov. Dave Heineman will be addressing this year's theme, "Harvesting Nebraska's Potential", on Wednesday, discussing the benefits of wind and solar energy on the state's economy.

Several other state lawmakers are expected to attend as well, including Sens. Lydia Brasch, Ken Haar, Steve Lathrop, Heath Mello and Ken Schilz.

The senators are scheduled to participate in a panel discussion Wednesday concerning what the Legislature has done regarding wind and solar energy legislation an what it needs to do going forward.

Organizer Dan McGuire says Nebraska is the only state that is entirely served by public power, and he says those utilities have been supportive of wind power. But environmental groups have been critical of the pace of wind power development in the state.

One of the event's organizers, John Hansen of the Nebraska Farmers Union, says the conference helps generate new ideas based on what has worked in other states.

The U.S. Department of Energy says Nebraska is the nation's third-windiest state, but ranks 26th in the energy it could now produce. The state lags behind neighboring states Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado and Kansas.

Registration for the conference is $125 through November 8, 2013, and the discounted hotel rate of $114 plus tax per night will expire on October 30, 2013. For participant registration and to view the program, go to www.NebraskaWindConference.com.

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