From two presentations by Michael Vickerman at the 2009 Wisconsin Renewable Energy Summit, Milwaukee:

Getting Serious About Solar Hot Water
Value Proposition to System Owner
+ Less expensive (on a life-cycle basis)
+ Predictable return
+ Negligible risk

Value Proposition to Society
+ Emission-free
+ Non-depleting
+ Indigenous
+ Highly secure

SHW Potential in Wisconsin
+ Can offset between 2.6% to 4.1% of NG use
+ Avoiding 150 million therms/year
+ Saving $150 million annually (2006 prices)
+ Offsetting 820,000 metric ton of CO2

Economic Development Impacts of Renewable Energy

Economies of scale are achieved by shrinking the labor contribution relative to output, which explains why utility-scale energy is less expensive than do-it-yourself energy.

Distributing renewable energy through customer-sited systems increases job-hours per energy unit produced as well as promoting entrepreneurship and small business development. . . .

From Small Systems – Big Results in Germany:
+ Utilities are required to accept power from customer-sited RE systems through fixed, long-term buyback rates
+ 15% of Germany’s electricity now generated from renewables
+ In 2007 $14 billion invested in RE
+ Germany has half the world’s PV capacity
+ Payoff: 300,000 people employed in the RE sector.

And in Wisconsin:
+ 338 Focus on Energy-funded RE systems installed
+ 40% increase over 2007
+ $3.5MM incentives obligated
+ Full-service installers — 35 PV; 24 biogas; 64 SHW; 21 wind; 15 biomass.

From another presentation at the Wisconsin Wind Energy Supply Chain Workshop:

Windpower in Wisconsin: Outlook for 2009 and Beyond

Why Promote Windpower?
Clean = Environmental
Non-depleting = Energy Security
Fixed Price = Risk Management
Creates Wealth = Economic Development
Scalable to Utilities = Practicality

The current Renewable Energy Standard (RES) will yield an additional ~4.2 billion kWh/yr of qualifying renewable electricity by 2015, assuming no load growth.

Assuming that windpower generates 90% of that quantity, about 1,600 MW of wind capacity must come on line between 2004 and 2015 to satisfy the RES.