As Americans, we pride ourselves on our purple mountains’ majesty and amber waves of grain, on the astonishingly beautiful lands we all share from sea to shining sea. However, climate change, with its extreme weather events, rising water levels, and boiling heat waves, has serious consequences for the planet and, without intervention, is only expected to get worse.

The consequences of climate change will devastate economies around the world. According to the Universal Ecological Fund, climate change has cost the U.S. economy around $240 billion each year from 2007-20161, with continuing inaction costing the US economy an estimated $14.5 trillion by 2070.

Strategic, widespread adoption of sustainable energy, with zero emissions and limitless resources, is a major step toward addressing the dire consequences of a warming planet. In honor of American Clean Power Week, we want to highlight how sustainable energy not only safeguards the environment but also provides many practical economic benefits in the process. After all, clean energy has been one of the fastest-growing industries of the past ten years, demonstrating that responsible business practices can be commercially successful and a valuable part of our grid.

At Invenergy, environmental considerations start at the earliest stages of project development with a thorough analysis of the ecological sensitivities of any site under consideration. Every project is designed to responsibly accommodate those resources if development moves forward, while development best practices, innovations in our operating fleet, and ongoing efforts to improve our footprint have helped sustainable energy projects become beneficial on a wider scale than ever before.

Consumers recognize unspoiled natural beauty is a part of our American heritage worth preserving and the demand for clean energy that preserves it has helped the industry grow exponentially. According to ACP, over 28.5 gigawatts (GW) of clean power was added to the US grid in 2021, enough to power more than 6.6 million homes. There are 35 states in the ‘gigawatt club,’ and 10 states now have 5 GW or more installed. Five states have a clean energy generation share of electricity above 30%, and 25 states in the U.S generate at least 10% of their electricity from wind and solar. Iowa leads the nation at 56% clean energy generation, followed by South Dakota at 52% – up from 33% just one year ago.

Taken together, clean power is a way to reduce reliance on emissions-heavy energy sources while creating jobs, bolstering the economy, and preserving America the beautiful. A country full of sparkling rivers, blue skies, and bountiful prairies are something we can all be proud of, no matter where you’re from.