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Suburb scraps plan for wind turbine  

Winnetka’s breezes may not be strong enough to power an energy-producing turbine.

Village officials had considered building a 278-foot wind turbine atop a landfill that fronted Willow Road, but they decided Tuesday after discussing the details not to go forward with the plan. They were concerned that the project’s estimated cost of $3.8 million would far outweigh its benefit, according to Village Manager Doug Williams.

For the turbine to be effective, trustees in the North Shore community were told, wind speeds must average more than 14 mph over a 12-month period. That rate, officials agreed, is not assured. That’s one reason a majority of the state’s turbines are in Downstate areas with typically strong winds.

Officials said they will continue to explore conservation in the suburb, where energy consumption has increased 40 percent since 1992.

Williams said Winnetka’s options include distributing eco-friendly light bulbs to residents and allowing them to pay extra on their monthly utility bills to support alternative energy sources.

chicagotribune.com

10 May 2007

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