Washtenaw County will begin testing turbines this year to see how feasible wind power would be for homeowners or anyone else wanting to invest in wind in the area.
Consultants’ work so far shows the western part of the county is windier, but there may be a test site in the eastern part of the county as well, said Tony VanDerworp, director of planning and the environment for the county.
The test site, or sites, will consist of one to three turbines, likely to be single-pole mounted and up to 100 meters high. They’ll remain in place for up to 18 months to test their feasibility. VanDerworp said the county is not interested in getting into the wind power business, but that the information will be made available to home- and farm owners and businesses interested in wind power development.
Wind generation facilities could include wind farms with larger utility-scale turbines that will feed energy to the power grid, or small-scale, on-site turbines that help to power individual homes, businesses and farms.
The move, in partnership with the city of Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan, follows a resolution adopted last year by the county Board of Commissioners that directed staff members to test wind resources locally. The study phase cost about $20,000; the cost of erecting the poles has not been determined yet. They will go up some time this spring.
For more information, visit www.ewashtenaw.org/wind or e-mail Joshua Long at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Tracy Davis
News Staff Reporter
10 March 2007
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