Siemens Axes 407 Workers At Wind Turbine Blade Plant

Siemens confirmed that it’s laying off 407 workers at a wind turbine blade manufacturing plant in Fort Madison, Iowa, nearly two thirds the plant’s workforce, saying the layoffs were due to the uncertainty in Congress’s continued stalling on a vote to extend the production tax credit (PTC) for wind energy projects, The Des Moines Register reported Tuesday. The PTC reimburses 2.2 cents per kilowatt hour generated by wind farms, and a recent report commissioned by the Energy Department found that in years where Congress failed to renew such federal support, wind energy project development suffered in the U.S. The PTC will expire at the end of this year unless renewed by Congress.