READING – Volunteers in Hillsdale County have formed the M49 Wind Coalition to help educate their community about the benefits of the Ranger Wind Farm, a wind facility being developed in the townships of Reading and Allen. The project is being led by OwnEnergy, a national leader in mid-sized wind farms.
As wind developers bring new wind energy to the state and region, the local host communities are experiencing many benefits to help boost economies while improving environmental quality. In the case of the Ranger Wind Farm, OwnEnergy is donating funds to help the newly formed community group participate in supporting or launching new initiatives to benefit the area.
“M49 Wind Coalition was formed to unite residents and demonstrate local public support for wind power and to help educate our neighbors about the proposed Ranger Wind Farm,” said Jenni Foust, the group’s president. “I believe that we have a unique opportunity with our geographic location to provide land for the development of wind energy. Our goal is for Reading and Allen townships to be a part of the country’s clean energy future that will improve our environment and help our local economy by providing jobs in maintenance, construction, manufacturing, and many other support sectors,” added Foust.
Wind farms produce lease payments for landowners and increase the tax base for communities. In 2011, the Environmental Law & Policy Center identified that over 100 businesses in Michigan employ 4,000 people with jobs involved in engineering and manufacturing wind turbine components.
According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), Michigan is home to 40 of the 550 U.S. manufacturing facilities and ranks 16th for total megawatts (MW) installed with 19 wind farms producing 988 MW of power. Generating wind power creates no emissions and uses virtually no water. The wind power installed in Michigan will avoid 1,500,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually, the equivalent of taking over 270,000 cars off the road.
OwnEnergy is hosting an open house today from 6-8 p.m. at the Reading American Legion Post No. 360 in Reading for those interested in learning more about the proposed project and meeting representatives of the company.
Follow M49 Wind Coalition’s Facebook page to learn more about the group and the Ranger Wind Farm.
Founded in 2014, the mission of the M-49 Wind Coalition is to provide accurate information about wind energy to the community.
OwnEnergy is the national leader in mid-sized wind energy development that enables landowners and communities to build and profit directly from their own local wind farms. Since OwnEnergy was founded in 2007, it has grown a project pipeline of more than 25 community-supported wind farm partnerships across 20 U.S. states.
The company works in partnership with its nationwide network of energy entrepreneurs to develop the approximately 1,700 MW of wind farms in its pipeline.
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