Excavator manufacturer Komatsu has unveiled plans to build a new windfarm at its Wearside plant.
The firm is looking into the feasibility of erecting a wind turbine at its Birtley factory which the firm says would save the production of 500 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year ““ 12,500 tonnes over its proposed 25-year lifetime.
Komatsu will submit an application to Gateshead Council later this month to raise a temporary wind monitoring mast, which would check its assumptions on wind speed and power are accurate.
Pending approval, the 40 metre test mast would be installed in the centre of Komatsu site and would remain in place for 12 months, to give accurate year-round measurement of wind speed.
The firm reckons savings from the project would be equivalent to around £95,000 per annum, giving a payback time of four to five years.
If planning permission for the wind turbine is granted, Komatsu will be the first manufacturing site in Gateshead borough offsetting its impact on the environment in this way.
Manufacturing director Graham Henderson said: “If the project is given the green light, it will be a positive move towards supporting the local environment.”
2 May 2007
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