Iowa, Forest City School has Wind Turbine since 1999!

The Forest City Community School has a 600-kilowatt wind turbine. The project was financed through a combination of a loan from the Iowa Energy Center’s Alternative Energy Revolving Loan Program and a low-interest loan from the local bank.forest-city-iowa-school-wind-turbine

Dwight Pierson, the Superintendant said “When we got started, no grant monies were available for a wind project. We understood we’d have to finance it, so we spent seven or eight months looking at the figures”. “We really felt it could pay for itself and become an asset for the district. At the time, we had one of the only turbines around that was totally financed, all through conventional loans.”

A Federal Renewable Energy Production Incentive of 1.5 cents per kilowatthour was recieved by the school. Including the incentive, the turbine has generated $284,000 (more than 4.7 million kilowatthours) worth of electricity between January 1999, when it became operational, and February 2004.

“Installing the turbine was a bold decision for our board to make,” Pierson says, “but its decision was made on good input, and the cost investment penciled out.”

At Forest City’s School it was a student who had the idea to install a wind turbine. A student in Ron Kvale’s physics class, Paul Smith, became interested in wind energy. The stdent measured the winds around the school finding that the land might be a viable site for a turbine. Smith and his teacher presented this to the school board, the board liked it. The school conducted an energy audit, that helped reduce the school’s energy use so less of the wind turbine’s electricity would be wasted.

Pierson speaks of the Forest City School wind project with pride. “This has been a win-win for our community, a real asset,” he said. “And we actually underestimated how much of an asset it would be.”

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One Response to “Iowa, Forest City School has Wind Turbine since 1999!”

  1. […] Iowa, Forest City School has Wind Turbine Too, since 1999! […]

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