Electric Association will begin constructing three wind turbines atop Pillar Mountain
soon. On Tuesday, two members of KEA's Board of Directors joined KMXT's Mike
Murray to discuss how the project is progressing.
According to KEA, preparation work
is coming along well, positioning them to begin erecting the wind turbines
beginning in June. KEA board member Michael Brechan provided an update on the
status of the project.
-- (Brechan 1 28 sec. "About four years ago ... about the 1st of June.")
with transporting 80-foot-long sections of tower and about 28 loads of crane,
the three 128-foot long blades will make their way through town and up the
mountain, an event board member Jay Johnston referred to as the "blade parade."
-- (Johnston 1 11
sec. "I think it will be
really ... once those are erected.")
Johnston said the three
1.5 megawatt wind turbines will produce about 12 million kilowatt hours of
energy a year, thus significantly reducing reliance on diesel fuel and
ultimately saving customers money.
-- (Johnston 2 41
sec. "Hopefully displacing
about ... be worth it in the long run.")
Johnston called financing
the wind project a very important part of the process of realizing KEA's goals.
He said it was a major element of the project, with funding coming from various
sources and some yet to be secured.
-- (Johnston 3 43
sec. "We've secured funding
from ... it's hard to say.")
Brechan said that
people have to understand that the wind project is an expensive one relative to
the cost of power from the Terror
project. However, he said that given the uncertain nature of the cost of diesel
fuel, the project will ultimately prove economical.
-- (Brechan 2 23 sec. "If you start comparing ... good sense for our community.")
to KEA, the wind turbines will be assembled from June through early July. One
of KEA's major concerns is weather, because high winds and fog could potentially
cause significant delays in construction. Once the turbines are assembled, however,
KEA will begin operational testing. KEA hopes to have the turbines completed and
online by early fall.