Wind Companies to Buy More U.S. Parts in Agreement With Unions

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Wind Companies to Buy More U.S. Parts in Agreement With Unions

Business Week – June 10 (Bloomberg) — Wind-energy companies agreed to buy more parts from U.S. suppliers, and a labor union promised to join in lobbying Congress for a requirement to use more renewable energy.

The accord announced today by the American Wind Energy Association and the United Steelworkers union grew out of objections by lawmakers that federal money was being spent to purchase clean-energy components made abroad.

The agreement “sends a very positive message” to Congress that the clean-energy industry is trying to build an industrial base in the United States, following the example set earlier by Japanese automakers, Christine Tezak, senior energy and environment policy analyst at Robert W. Baird, a Milwaukee-based asset management fund, said in a phone interview.

The partnership calls for the “aggressive development and utilization” of domestically based equipment manufacturers and suppliers. Targets remain to be set, according to a summary of the agreement.

Senator Sherrod Brown, a Democrat from Ohio who has opposed U.S. subsidies to projects dependent on equipment from abroad, said today the agreement will ensure that clean-energy investments revitalize domestic industries.

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