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Wind energy investing made news in mid-April when Scandinavian home furnishing giant Ikea announced plans to build a wind turbine farm on property owned by the company in Illinois.
The Ikea investment is an excellent example of how businesses are using earth-friendly energy resources, such as wind energy investing, to bolster profits. Protecting the environment from the adverse side effects of traditional energy sources only sweetens the deal.
Corporate management explained earlier this month that the distance of the wind turbine farm from Ikea's business locations prohibits the use of the turbine energy by Ikea. The company itself relies on other alternative energy means, like solar panels, to power its facilities.
Instead, the strategy behind Ikea's wind energy investment is to harness the energy generated by the wind farm, and then sell it in the open market in order to offset its own energy costs. The farm is projected to produce energy in amounts sufficient to power more than 34,000 homes.
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As crude oil prices escalate, Ikea isn't the only company that's recently been turning to alternative fuel sources for their energy needs.
On April 23, Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) announced it signed a deal with MidAmerican Energy to power its Iowa data center with 407 megawatts of renewable wind energy.
"But it's not just our own operations we want to green: Google has also invested over $1 billion in 15 renewable energy investments around the world, in an effort to put more renewable energy on the grid and reduce global greenhouse gas emissions," Google's head of energy strategy and development Sam Aarons said of the deal.
In late 2013, Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) announced that its newly acquired data center in Iowa would be powered completely by energy from a wind farm located nearby. Industry giants Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) and Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX) are also investing in wind energy as a hedge against the unpredictability of fossil fuel price fluctuations.
The moves are proof that businesses are waking up to the investment opportunities that lie within the realm of renewable energy, such as wind and solar power.
Just look at these latest numbers that show that businesses – and investors – should look to the alternative energy sector to net long-term gains…
Convincing Numbers For Solar and Wind Energy Investing
Solar, wind, and geothermal production are expected to double over the next 25 years, according to the Energy Information Administration. Clean energy will account for 33% of all U.S. electricity generation by 2016 – up from 16% today, according to the same report.
U.S. wind power alone accounts for 4.1% of U.S. electricity – enough to power an equivalent of 15.5 million homes. But the United States has only put a fraction of its wind energy potential to use. The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) reports that the country's land and offshore wind energy potential could provide enough electricity to power it 13 times over.
The Global Wind Energy Council expects wind energy growth to accelerate worldwide over the next several years, with most emanating from emerging markets.
Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors identified one promising player in the wind energy investing arena. The company is the world's leader in wind power applications, and Moors advised readers to jump on its stock once the wind sector begins its breakout…
- MIT Technology Review: Is Renewable Energy a "Good" Investment?
- Chicago Tribune: Ikea Investing In Illinois Wind Farm
- HNGN: Google's Iowa Data Center Will Soon Use 100% Renewable Wind Energy Under New Deal With MidAmerican