While Iowa could require 35-199 GW of additional installed wind capacity to meet net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, land use ordinances and regulatory hurdles leave the door open for natural gas to play a role in decarbonizing, according to estimates.

Iowa Wind

As of 2020, wind comprised about 57% of Iowa’s electricity supply, according to researchers with Clear Path,. The nonprofit focuses on advancing policies to cut emissions in the energy and industrial sectors. 

In order to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, the state would need to see a “massive infrastructure build-out over the next 28 years,” said Clear Path’s Spencer Nelson, managing director of research.

Standing in the way of such a buildout are county-level restrictions on new wind development that were...