U.S. Water News Online
SACO, Maine -- This southern Maine city is considering
whether to expand its use of wind power.
A small wind turbine already produces 1.8 kilowatts of electricity
for Saco's wastewater treatment facility. Now, officials are thinking
about buying a larger turbine that would be installed near the new
train station on Saco Island.
The 50-kilowatt turbine, made by the Canadian company Entegrity
Wind, would provide more than enough power to meet the station's
"For parts of the year or parts of the day, we (could) be selling
electrons out on the grid," City Administrator Richard Michaud said.
The 100-foot tall turbine has a 30-year design life and is
estimated to pay for itself in cost savings within about 10 years.
Concerns about noise and danger to birds that surfaced when the
council bought the first turbine have proven to be unfounded, said
City Councilor Eric Cote, a leader of the city's energy-efficiency
"Our experience is that it doesn't make noise and it hasn't killed
a single bird at our treatment plant," Cote said.
Feedback on the city's experiment with wind power has been
positive, he said.
"People are very excited about it. They're very excited about
renewable energy in general," he said. "There aren't that many wind
turbines around, and we get a lot of visitors."
Travis Peaslee, a member of the Saco energy committee and a
laboratory technician at the wastewater plant, agreed the first
turbine has been a success.
"We put the small one down here to get the city used to it, and
now it's sort of a proven thing," he said.
The City Council is expected to vote next month on whether to
approve the $150,000 purchase of the larger turbine.
"We're promoting this technology," Cote said. "We think it works."
Return to the
U.S. Water News' Archives page
Return to the U.S. Water
Use a comma to separate e-mail addresses:
Hi, I thought you might like to read this article.