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Wind power may get a turn

Two California energy companies are proposing wind farm projects in Benton County, northwest of Lafayette.

Wind Turbines in Farm Field

WHAT THEY WANT

Orion Energy LLC wants to erect at least 75 turbines capable of generating 130 megawatts, enough to power 30,000 to 40,000 homes. It has opened an office in the county seat of Fowler and hopes to start construction on the $150 million to $175 million project by 2007. Meanwhile, enXco Inc. is planning a 100-megawatt farm. The two projects would be Indiana's first large-scale wind farms.

WHY INDIANA

Indiana has two very breezy regions -- one just northwest of Indianapolis and the other northwest of Lafayette, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Sustained winds in both areas are 14 mph to 16 mph at 150 feet off the ground, where turbines with three huge blades would spin.

UPSIDE AND DOWNSIDE

Currently, Indiana's wind turbines only generate about 20 kilowatts of power, Purdue University estimates. Studies have shown the state could produce up to 40,000 megawatts of electricity from the wind, said Brian Wright, coal policy director for the Hoosier Environmental Council.
Environmentalists are pushing Indiana to join 21 other states and require that a set percentage of the state's power come from renewable sources. A bill that would have... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

  Wind Turbines in Farm Field

 WHAT THEY WANT

Orion Energy LLC wants to erect at least 75 turbines capable of generating 130 megawatts, enough to power 30,000 to 40,000 homes. It has opened an office in the county seat of Fowler and hopes to start construction on the $150 million to $175 million project by 2007. Meanwhile, enXco Inc. is planning a 100-megawatt farm. The two projects would be Indiana's first large-scale wind farms.

WHY INDIANA

Indiana has two very breezy regions -- one just northwest of Indianapolis and the other northwest of Lafayette, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Sustained winds in both areas are 14 mph to 16 mph at 150 feet off the ground, where turbines with three huge blades would spin.

UPSIDE AND DOWNSIDE

Currently, Indiana's wind turbines only generate about 20 kilowatts of power, Purdue University estimates. Studies have shown the state could produce up to 40,000 megawatts of electricity from the wind, said Brian Wright, coal policy director for the Hoosier Environmental Council.
Environmentalists are pushing Indiana to join 21 other states and require that a set percentage of the state's power come from renewable sources. A bill that would have done that failed in the last General Assembly.

Critics say wind farms are unsightly, reduce property values and kill birds in large numbers.
 


Source: http://www.indystar.com/app...

JUN 17 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/3065-wind-power-may-get-a-turn
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