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Windmill idea at high school raises questions

Kaukauna Utilities wants to install a pair of 20-kilowatt wind turbines on the west end of Kaukauna High School ...Sounds good in theory ...Still, there are questions to be answered.

By summer's end, Kaukauna High School may be joining part of the wind energy movement, which could be a boon to the district.

Kaukauna Utilities wants to install a pair of 20-kilowatt wind turbines on the west end of Kaukauna High School to help generate electricity to towns in its coverage area.

Kaukauna Utilities would pay the cost of the windmills' purchase, installation and maintenance - for the first 10 years. Then it would hand the turbines over to the school district so it could tie into the turbines and offset electricity costs at the high school.

Sounds good in theory. Not only would the school district meet future needs with no upfront costs, but it also could provide a new learning opportunity for technology students who can track the energy generated, much like they do with the solar panels the utility installed two years ago. If approved, it would be the first windmills located at a school in the Fox Valley.

Nationwide, more than 80 schools have installed some type of wind turbine for both the energy and educational aspects. A pair of turbines in Spirit Lake, Iowa, in fact, provides half of its district's electrical needs.

Still, there are questions to be answered, such as... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

By summer's end, Kaukauna High School may be joining part of the wind energy movement, which could be a boon to the district.

Kaukauna Utilities wants to install a pair of 20-kilowatt wind turbines on the west end of Kaukauna High School to help generate electricity to towns in its coverage area.

Kaukauna Utilities would pay the cost of the windmills' purchase, installation and maintenance - for the first 10 years. Then it would hand the turbines over to the school district so it could tie into the turbines and offset electricity costs at the high school.

Sounds good in theory. Not only would the school district meet future needs with no upfront costs, but it also could provide a new learning opportunity for technology students who can track the energy generated, much like they do with the solar panels the utility installed two years ago. If approved, it would be the first windmills located at a school in the Fox Valley.

Nationwide, more than 80 schools have installed some type of wind turbine for both the energy and educational aspects. A pair of turbines in Spirit Lake, Iowa, in fact, provides half of its district's electrical needs.

Still, there are questions to be answered, such as what shape will these turbines be in 10 years from now? What will it cost to maintain them? Even though the proposed windmills are relatively small - similar in height to stadium lights - would the windmills generate enough noise to cause distractions for students?

The public has a chance to get these questions and others answered tonight when the Kaukauna Area School District Board meets. Board members are offering residents a chance for feedback on the issue, and they should take them up on it. The issue could come up for a vote as soon as June 7.


Source: http://www.wisinfo.com/apps...

MAY 24 2010
https://www.windaction.org/posts/26442-windmill-idea-at-high-school-raises-questions
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