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Wind turbines on Genoa Township hall property to come down

The wind turbines that were installed on the Genoa Township hall property will be coming down for safety’s sake. The Genoa Township Board met last night and approved a contract with a local company that specializes in renewable energy to take down the turbines within the next few weeks. Michigan-based Windspire manufactured the turbines but is now bankrupt so the township has been unable to get any support or find parts for the last three years. Officials say the monitoring software continually loses historical data so a full accounting of wind generation impossible. Township Manager Mike Archinal tells WHMI the turbines were a test project and did increase knowledge and visibility about renewable energy with the highly visible site but in terms of production, even at the very onset, the solar panels were out producing wind by about three to one. He says the middle turbine hasn’t been working for some time and it actually disintegrated on a really windy day and sent parts of aluminum scattering. He says they’ve made it safe for now but really, all of the turbines need to come down. The township received a $94,000 grant in 2010 for the installation of the hybrid solar panels and the wind turbines. Archinal says they’re still getting a benefit from the solar panels, which are connected to the township hall and subsidizing energy there. The contract with the Green Panel firm of Brighton to remove the turbines and augment the panels was approved at a cost not to exceed $9,625. (JM)