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From Panhandle to Gulf Coast, Texas sees surge in wind energy projects
Ranch land has been leased. Roads are being laid under the shadows of seabirds. And the $4 million wind turbines are on order. Wind developers from around the globe have rushed into the Texas Panhandle and Gulf Coast at a pace not seen since the industry’s early days in the mid-2000s. More than 7,000 megawatts of new wind turbines are scheduled to be built by the end of next year, potentially increasing Texas’ wind power capacity by almost 60 percent. Whether developers will be able to carry through as advertised remains to be seen. But the volume of projects underway represents a dramatic acceleration for a Texas wind industry that has seen relatively modest growth since 2010. Dallas Morning News
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Four years after BP disaster, erosion quickens along Gulf
MYRTLE GROVE — The boats that pulled up to a shoreline in Bay Jimmy on Thursday morning were still in water, but the GPS showed them traveling over dry land. Not too long ago, that land actually existed, but the shoreline erosion in this area, heavily oiled from the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010, has made the land smaller. Although some erosion would have happened anyway, environmental groups say the oil hastened the process. The Advocate
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Report: 'Oil is not gone; impacts to wildlife ongoing’
Dying dolphins, bluefin tuna embryos with heart defects and hundreds of dead sea turtles washing ashore are proof the BP oil spill is still hurting and killing wildlife four years after the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the National Wildlife Federation claims in a new report. The report, “Four Years into the Gulf Oil Disaster: Still Waiting for Restoration,” includes a compilation of research so far about impacts of the oil disaster on 14 species around the Gulf of Mexico. “Determining what the impacts are is really very difficult,” said Doug Inkley, National Wildlife Federation senior scientist. The Advocate
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4 years after BP spill, questions remain in Gulf Coast over long-term health effects
CHALMETTE, La. — When a BP oil well began gushing crude into the Gulf of Mexico four years ago, fisherman George Barisich used his boat to help clean up the millions of gallons that spewed in what would become the worst offshore spill in U.S. history. Like so many Gulf Coast residents who pitched in after the April 20, 2010, explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig, Barisich was motivated by a desire to help and a need to make money — the oil had destroyed his livelihood. Dallas Morning News
Submitted yesterday

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Huntington Ingalls taps Kinder Morgan Energy Partners for study of Avondale shipyard
NEWPORT NEWS, Virginia -- Huntington Ingalls Industries, the parent company of Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, announced today it will conduct a study with Kinder Morgan Energy Partners to explore redeveloping the Avondale shipyard in Louisiana. Since the July 2010 announcement to close Avondale, HII has aggressively sought a strategic solution to redevelop the facility, the company said in a news release. The study will explore and evaluate best-use opportunities for the facility. Mississippi Press
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'Gun Valley' moves south; Remington and Steyr are a big part of the trend
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- With Remington announcing in February its plans to open a $110 million dollar facility in Huntsville and Steyr Arms opening a 33,000 square foot facility in Bessemer just last week, Alabama and the south has become to new "Gun Valley" of the United States. That term has been used for years for the Connecticut, Massachusetts and New York area where most gun manufacturing has occurred for 150 years. Companies like Smith&Wesson, Ruger, Remington and Beretta all have major facilities there. Now, major gun and ammo manufacturers are moving south, bringing jobs and tax dollars, boosting the economies in states from Florida, the Carolinas, Georgia and Alabama. AL.com
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Doing Better: New initiatives work to get NC adults back into college
Victoria Namishia was convinced that it was too late, and that she was too old. It was 2011, and she still did not have the undergraduate degree she had begun pursuing after graduating from high school in 1984. She had built a career at Bank of America in Charlotte. She had even tried in the mid-1990s to earn an education degree at UNC Charlotte. But the demands of full-time work and motherhood prompted her to drop out.She kept worrying, however, that not having a four-year degree would hurt her job prospects if she ever left the bank. She also didn’t like having fallen short of her dream of becoming the first person in her family to graduate from college. Raleigh News & Observer
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Veteran economist remains bullish on American business
Economics has a reputation as the “dismal science,” but you wouldn’t know that talking to the loquacious forecaster James F. Smith. “He who lives by the crystal ball better get used to the taste of broken glass,” he likes to joke. Smith has been a fixture for UNC Asheville’s annual Crystal Ball Economic Forum for 28 of its 30 years. David Berson, chief economist at Nationwide Insurance, joined the lineup 26 years ago. Together, the pair of economists has become an April institution on campus, offering insights on where the economy may be heading, which can affect the nest eggs of investors in the audience. Asheville Citizen-Times
Submitted yesterday

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Georgia ports on track to smash cargo records in 2014
SAVANNAH | Georgia's seaports are on track to finish the 2014 fiscal year with record cargo volumes as third-quarter numbers show big growth capped by the ports' busiest month ever in terms of total tonnage being shipped to and from the docks. The Georgia Ports Authority says it handled 21.8 million tons of imports and exports during the first nine months of the fiscal year that started July 1, a pace that's 8.4 percent ahead of the same period in 2013. That includes 2.61 million tons of cargo that moved through the state's ports at Savannah and Brunswick in March. It's the most weight the ports have ever seen in a single month. Athens Banner-Herald
Submitted yesterday

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Red Carpet Tour brings industrial site consultants to Augusta
For decades, state officials have been using the Red Carpet Tour -- and its stop at the Masters Tournament on Thursday -- as a strategy to attract new business to the state. This year, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce is trying a new approach. The tour buses aren’t filled with prospective business owners, but with site selection experts from some of the largest consulting firms in the world. The Red Carpet Tour has been coming to Augusta for 55 years. Officials cite 15,000 jobs and $3 billion in investment over those years. The tour, involving 32 industrial site selection consultants, started Wednesday with a dinner at the governor’s mansion in Atlanta. It will head to Savannah on Friday after the participants have had a day on the Augusta National for the first day of Masters competition. Augusta Chronicle
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Features & Opinion

 Top Ten Places in the South for Relocating California Companies

Reshoring manufacturing capacity from primarily Asia to the South and Mexico is now a common thing to do and it's all about money. When China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001, the average manufacturing wage in China's Pearl River Delta (PRD) was about 58 cents an hour.

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

 FEATURE  
By Dr. Glen Fenter
Desperation sometimes masks itself in acceptance. Such was the case for Takelia Carter of Marion, Ark. For Carter, the mother of six school-age children in a low paying job, desperation was normative existence. This was her life in Crittenden County, Ark., deep in the Delta where unfortunately one in four families lives well below the poverty level.
 

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

FEATURE     
By Mike Randle
There are numerous factors driving the new industrial revolution in the South. And it is a revolution, as this manufacturing surge that began in 2007 continues to break records year after year in the total number of large, capital intensive projects. One factor, of course, is that reshoring of facilities back to the U.S. continues to grow each year.
 
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean

We try to change up the categories in our annual Ten Top 10s section, but we always include the "Ten People Who Made a Difference" category. This year though, we are honoring 12 and you will learn why by reading about this group of folks who have made a difference in the South. Here is our annual list that includes executives, economic developers and politicians who have made a difference in the South's economy.


 


 

 

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