A few months ago, John F. Kerry, the president’s special envoy for climate change, stated that individuals losing work in coal and hydraulic fracturing would have a better choice of opportunities in the solar business or Wind turbine technicians. That was back in the day. Yet, in less than two months, a Wind blade manufacturing factory in Aberdeen, South Dakota, has announced it will close its doors permanently.
Molded Fiber Glass will be phased out, displacing roughly 300 workers and their families. It’s the latest massive loss of energy jobs in the state after President Joe Biden decides to halt construction of the Keystone pipeline on his first day in office. MFG stated in a press release that the closure is due to changing market conditions, global competition, and potential changes to tax regulations affecting the U.S. energy industry.
The Aberdeen facility has been producing Wind turbine blades since 2007. The plant will continue operations for the next two months or until all existing orders have been fulfilled. Last Monday, a family member of one of the workers was informed of the closure. The announcement caught employees entirely off guard. It baffled her as well. MFG threatened to close the facility and eliminate 400 workers in 2017 due to proposed tax policy changes.
At the time, Republican U.S. Senator John Thune halted the closure by lobbying for changes to the 2017 tax package that would benefit the business. In an emailed statement, Thune expressed concern that, at a time when Wind energy is experiencing record investment, this growth is not converting into American jobs. As a result, it’s complicated for people who work in these well-paying jobs in Aberdeen to face uncertainty once more.