Gov Rendell Announces Energy Technology Company Gamesa Coming to PA
Proposed Facilities Expected to Create Up to 1,000 Jobs, Provide Clean Electricity to 135,000 Homes
HARRISBURG – After several months of negotiations, PA Governor Edward G. Rendell today announced that the Spanish wind-energy company Gamesa Corp. has agreed to base its U.S. headquarters and East Coast development offices in Philadelphia and to open an advanced technology manufacturing facility for wind turbine generator blades in Pennsylvania.
Gamesa also has worked out 400 megawatts’ worth of power purchase agreements and letters of intent to sell wind-generated power to Pennsylvania utilities, raising the amount of clean electricity available in the grid forPennsylvania consumers. The 400 megawatts are enough to provide clean electricity to almost 135,000 homes.
Together with the construction, operation and maintenance of its wind farms, Gamesa’s two offices and factory are expected to create as many as 1,000 jobs in the Commonwealth over the next five years
“As I have made clear, energy is a top priority for my administration and is a strategic economic sector forPennsylvania,” Governor Rendell said. “America’s energy past is grounded right here inPennsylvania, where we led the world in coal and oil. The nation’s energy future is right here, too. We are leaders in wind-energy production and are gaining fast in the development of fuel cells and other advanced energy technologies.
“Pennsylvania is open for business in advanced-energy development — and that is a huge win for our environment, our economy and our national security,” Governor Rendell said.
“We are very impressed by the strong reception, leadership and well- grounded thinking we have experienced in Pennsylvania,” said Inaki Lopez Gandasegui, Chief Executive Officer of Gamesa. “Similar to our achieving industry-leader status in the wind-energy business in Spain, the world’s second-largest wind energy marketplace in terms of installed capacity, our intention is to advance to all corners of the North American marketplace from our Pennsylvania base.”
The Governor’s announcement enhances the state’s reputation as a leader in the development and deployment of clean and advanced energy technology. Pennsylvania already is a leader on the East Coast with wind-farm production capacity at 129 megawatts — enough to power almost 45,000 homes — and another 49 megawatts scheduled to come on line within the next year.
Gamesa, a publicly traded company on Spain’s stock exchange, is headquartered inVitoria,Spain. The company is the second-largest wind-energy manufacturer and the only vertically integrated wind-energy company in the world, meaning the company manufactures the parts for wind-energy units and then develops the wind farms itself.
The site for Gamesa’s manufacturing facility, which will employ as many as 400 workers, has not been determined. The company expects to make that announcement within the next month. Both theU.S. headquarters and East Coast development office will be located inPhiladelphia. Site agreements are being finalized.
“Attracting new investment in energy technology can help to stimulate the economy,” Governor Rendell said. “At the same time, we can ensure the highest standards of environmental protection while contributing to our national security by more rigorously developing indigenous energy resources. Gamesa’s commitment is a win-win-win situation for our Commonwealth, and it guarantees that Pennsylvania will be a strong player in these growing markets for years to come.”
Governor Rendell recently launched some major initiatives to build a clean, indigenous, diversified energy industry in the state, including re- establishing the dormant Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority. Together with a broader fund at the Department of Community and Economic Development, PEDA can provide nearly $1 billion in tax-free bond financing for clean energy projects.
The administration also is leading by example by developing a plan to ensure that in 10 years, 10 percent of all of the energy generated in the Commonwealth comes from clean, efficient sources. Governor Rendell directed the state to purchase 10 percent of its electricity from clean, advanced energy sources.
Helping to spur the market share for renewable energy is the $5 million Pennsylvania Energy Harvest grant program administered by the Department of Environmental Protection. The grant program provides the last increment of financing for clean and renewable energy projects that use energy sources such as biomass, wind, solar, small-scale hydroelectric, landfill methane methane , coal-bed methane and waste-coal.