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Group testing local wind speeds

The two anemometers, one placed 100-feet high and the other 200-feet high, will stay there one year and will determine if local wind speeds are fast enough to make Wayne County a candidate for wind turbines.

A group of local people is working with the state government on a plan that could bring a key source of alternative energy to Wayne County within the next three years.

The group this month will place two state-supplied wind anemometers, instruments for measuring wind, on the Kicks 96 WQLK-FM radio tower off of Union Pike.

The two anemometers, one placed 100-feet high and the other 200-feet high, will stay there one year and will determine if local wind speeds are fast enough to make Wayne County a candidate for wind turbines.

One 200-foot wind turbine costs more than $1 million but will generate $400,000 of renewable energy a year with a 43-year life expectancy, one member of the group, Bob Wotherspoon, said.

"It's a good resource for the community to have its own green energy," Cope Environmental Center's Sustainability Educator Phil Seybold said. "In this day and age, oil prices are only going up, so it is a good opportunity to get some other form of energy."

Wotherspoon has volunteered his 114-acre farm, which is in the direct path of wind blowing by the Kicks 96 tower, off of U.S. 27 for the location of the first turbine.

The group that is pushing for the study... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

A group of local people is working with the state government on a plan that could bring a key source of alternative energy to Wayne County within the next three years.

The group this month will place two state-supplied wind anemometers, instruments for measuring wind, on the Kicks 96 WQLK-FM radio tower off of Union Pike.

The two anemometers, one placed 100-feet high and the other 200-feet high, will stay there one year and will determine if local wind speeds are fast enough to make Wayne County a candidate for wind turbines.

One 200-foot wind turbine costs more than $1 million but will generate $400,000 of renewable energy a year with a 43-year life expectancy, one member of the group, Bob Wotherspoon, said.

"It's a good resource for the community to have its own green energy," Cope Environmental Center's Sustainability Educator Phil Seybold said. "In this day and age, oil prices are only going up, so it is a good opportunity to get some other form of energy."

Wotherspoon has volunteered his 114-acre farm, which is in the direct path of wind blowing by the Kicks 96 tower, off of U.S. 27 for the location of the first turbine.

The group that is pushing for the study comprises Earlham College professor Mick Jackson, Richmond Power & Light's Energy Services Director Harry Phillips, KICKS 96's Dave Strycker, Seybold and Wotherspoon.

"We're going to prove to Wayne County at the end of a year whether this is a good thing or it is a test we tried," Wotherspoon said. "At least we can put our heads up and say we tried, so 10 from years from now, nobody can ask why we don't have any wind turbines, while Lake County has them."

The group is working closely with the Office of Energy and Defense Development's Program Manager Ryan Brown.

In 2005, Brown helped with the Indiana Tall Towers Wind Study, a state-funded project in which wind speeds were studied at five sites around Indiana; Evansville, Rushville, Goodland, Burlington and La Grange.

"The key is to understand the resource," Brown said.

The Wayne County study will be privately funded and the only one of its kind going on when it begins this month, Brown said.

Wotherspoon believes that study will show Wayne County is a viable site for the turbines, if it can demonstrate that the winds are fast enough.

"If you can't get the blades to turn, it's a dead deal," he said.

 


Source: http://www.pal-item.com/app...

JUL 5 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/3345-group-testing-local-wind-speeds
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