Arkansas leading the way in new energy

Published: Jul. 13, 2011 at 9:21 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 13, 2011 at 10:26 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – On Wednesday members of the Kiwanis Club got a hands on lesson in clean energy. Members of the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association, Steve Patterson and Ken Smith, spoke to attendees about the future of energy in the state of Arkansas.

Executive Director, Steve Patterson, says Region 8 is the place to be. "We're forming a new association of advanced energy companies, educators and entrepreneurs in all parts of the state. Jonesboro is a very logical place for us to come because there are new developments here, establishment of a wind manufacturing plant, Nordex USA. We've just come from Arkansas State University. They have a great biosciences institute that is on the cutting edge of biofuels research."

Patterson believes that Arkansas has a real future when it comes to clean energy and biofuels. "Arkansas is in an ideal position. It's centrally located, which is why the windmill manufacturers wanted to come here. We sit on an immense amount of renewable fuel and resources, natural resources like soybeans and corn, waste materials. So, biofuels has great potential here."

Patterson says there are a number of facts about Arkansas few people are aware of. "We are one of the first southern states with energy efficiency standards established by the Public Service Commission last December. Also, Arkansas is the number one state consumer of renewable energy in the south. Primarily, hydroelectric power."

Patterson says he and members of the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association feel Arkansas will become a leading example to other areas. "We feel like Arkansas is in a great position to lead the nation, primarily the south, to the next generation of clean burning fuel."

For more information about clean energy in Arkansas, you can log onto this website.

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