RICHBURG – A Wirt official said this week the town is seeking a new business to possibly develop a wind farm in the area.
Having a wind farm created in Wirt isn’t a new concept. A town board member, who said he didn’t want to be named since the latest talks are still in their infancy, said wind farms are a development he’s been investigating for quite some time as a low-cost energy option for the area.
“We’re just a small town, and the people are burdened with taxes big-time,” said the board member. “We’re considering a wind farm as a way to relieve that tax burden.”
In February 2009, the Times Herald reported the town was looking into a wind farm after hearing a presentation from a Wyoming County town supervisor who described the benefits, which included tax relief for the residents, of having a wind farm in its community.
The Wirt official said that following the presentation, the town board held several public forums and hosted presentations from Noble Environmental Power to learn more about wind energy development.
“We had public hearings. At those meetings, we had the public’s support,” said the board member, adding everything was set for Noble to lead the project, but then the project fell through.
After that failed attempt, the board member started researching other wind turbine manufacturers. He came across a new business – Kean Wind Turbines Inc., a Buffalo-based company – which was looking for investors.
The company was scheduled to present to the town board earlier this week, but conflicts forced the company to reschedule, said Kean Stimm, Kean Wind Turbine founder. Kean Wind will reschedule with the town to conduct a presentation in the area during the fall. Mr. Stimm said he’s optimistic the company’s wind turbines are sure to impress the board and assist the community with obtaining low-cost energy.
Mr. Stimm said Kean Wind Turbines’ mills produce more energy for less cost to the consumer. They are smaller than the typical 8,000-part, three-blade windmill.
“Current wind mills develop about 1 percent of the energy of the wind into usable electricity, whereas ours generate about 40 percent of the wind energy into wind energy,” Mr. Stimm said. “Wind tunnel testing of the scale model estimated the turbine will produce power for less than one center per kilowatt-hour, and the cost of one Kean Wind Turbine is one-tenth that of an existing windmill of equivalent output.”
Kean Wind’s turbines have nine basic components with about 75 parts, the founder added.
The town board member said he expects the public will be very interested in attending this presentation, and he hopes the community displays the same support that it did five years ago.
The Times Herald will announce the new presentation date as soon as it is available.
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