RIVERTON – The Municipality of Pictou County is interested in wind farms.
Brian Cullen, CAO for the county, said a tender has been issued for submissions from qualified professionals to design, build and install a wind-energy project within Pictou County.
He said the county looked at two concepts, big wind and little wind, but in the end decided to go with the smaller type farm. A big wind farm with larger wind turbines would create larger revenues, but the costs of constructing such a wind farm is out of the county’s grasp.
The county is interested in a small wind farm which will still create “comfortable returns,” he said. One small wind turbine is estimated to cost between $300,000 and $350,000 and there could be as many as three wind turbines on one site.
Cullen said the municipality has recently registered for a comFit program through the Nova Scotia Department of Energy. If the comfit program approves its application, it plans on constructing three wind turbines on woodland in the Riverton area. The comFIT program, by guaranteeing a set rate at which electricity can be sold back to Nova Scotia Power, will allow the municipality to ensure a secure investment in renewable energy.
Cullen said net proceeds from the project’s return cannot be used for general revenue, such as paying electricity bills, but it can be invested or used for sustainable projects.
He said county councillors first became interested in wind power in hopes that it would offset some of the municipality’s large power bill costs, but will continue on with the project even though this can’t be done.
Tenders for the wind farm project will close Dec. 16.
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