Monday, June 22, 2009

The New Wind Generator at ASU

Went up on Friday. To get a sense of the scale, that's a man standing at the top of the tower.

Starting in 2004, the students at Appalachian State University have voted overwhelmingly to "tax" themselves $5 per student per semester to fund the Renewable Energy Initiative (REI), its mission "to reduce the environmental impact of Appalachian State University by replacing the university's existing sources of energy with cleaner forms of renewable energy...." Some 82% of students voting in 2004 supported the initiative. Last year 93% of students voted "yes!"

This wind generator is the latest installation on campus funded by that $5 assessment. Previous projects have included biodiesel/solar/photovoltaic projects, with more to come. This generator will produce an estimated 150,000 - 200,000 kilowatt hours annually, enough to power 10-15 homes. (Lots of technical background info at this REI page, including some very cool simulated movies of how the generator will look to a person driving up Rivers Street and a 360-degree fly-around of the site behind the Broyhill Inn.)

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