The Center for Ecological Technology (CET) has announced its annual schedule of wind farm tours at the Green Mountain Power Corporation’s renewable energy wind facility in nearby Searsburg, Vermont this summer and fall, and the first group of tours is scheduled for Wednesday, July 18. The Berkshire Renewable Energy Collaborative (BREC) sponsors the tours. Tours start at 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2:30 p.m. and are free to the public.
The wind facility, located on Searsburg Mountain, was the one of the first commercial-scale wind power facilities constructed in the northeast. Since 1997, eleven 550-kilowatt wind turbines have been producing electricity. Tour guides from Vermont Environmental Research Associates will cover topics ranging from selecting the site, public acceptance, how the technology works, wildlife protection, and the potential for wind power in this region.
“This is a unique opportunity to visit a wind farm that produces as much as 14 million kilowatt-hours of renewable energy annually. Seeing the turbines up close gives visitors a chance to better understand this clean, local form of energy production,” said Nancy Nylen, associate director of CET and coordinator of the BREC. “The tours also give residents from communities that are considering wind power a chance to see firsthand what’s involved.”
During the tour, participants learn about issues that may affect the energy future of the Berkshires and enjoy ample opportunity to ask questions. The Searsburg wind facility is only open for tours on a limited basis between July and October due to protection of black bear habitat.
More tour dates are scheduled for Saturday, August 4 and Saturday, August 25. Fall tours are planned for Saturday, September 8, Wednesday, September 19, Wednesday, October 3, and Saturday, October 13.
Space is limited to 20 individuals per tour. Reservations are accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis by contacting CET at 413-445-4556 ext. 25 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Directions to the site will be provided.
BREC is an ad hoc committee comprised of individuals representing educational, environmental, community and business interests. For more than 5 years, they have been working to promote energy conservation and increase the availability of renewable energy in the region. CET coordinates the activities of the BREC.
Support for this event comes from the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust. CET is an equal opportunity service provider and is funded in part by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.
19 June 2007
[note: the Searsburg turbines have been obsolete for many years and are much smaller than modern wind turbines]
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