Wind, Energy Workshop Coming To Leelanau County
posted on March 4, 2005 11:16am
Contact: Laura Probyn
EAST LANSING , Mich.—The wind that brings lake-effect snow to Traverse City may also help some farmers increase revenue and reduce energy costs. Michigan agricultural economists will explain how at a March 22 wind energy production workshop.
The program, which is part of the Michigan State University (MSU) Extension wind energy education project, will focus on small wind systems that generate energy for farms and homes, and funding opportunities available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The program will run from 8:30 a.m. to noon at the Northwest Michigan Horticultural Research Station in Traverse City. Topics will include an overview of wind energy in Michigan, the economics of utility scale and small wind systems, legal information about leasing to a wind developer and zoning issues. Funding opportunities will also be discussed.
According to the American Wind Energy Association, Michigan is the 14 th windiest state in the nation, and wind maps indicate three regions of the state are economically viable areas for wind energy production: western Michigan, the Thumb and regions of the Upper Peninsula.
Currently, Traverse City has one large wind turbine to generate local energy, and Mackinaw City has two. A few small wind systems are also located elsewhere in the state, generating local energy for farm and school use.
“Wind power is a very new concept in Michigan, unlike other Midwestern states, which have hundreds of megawatts of wind energy,” project coordinator Lynn Hamilton said. “But it’s catching on. We had an excellent response to a similar workshop held in Escanaba in February.”
Registration for the Traverse City wind workshop is $20, due March 18. Lunch will be available immediately following the session for $10, and a farm safety workshop will be held at the same location from 1 to 4 p.m. for $5.
For more information, or to register, call the Leelanau County MSU Extension office at 231-256-9888.