Wednesday, July 27, 2005
EMCs looking for wind resources
Green Power EMC has launched a test to evaluate the potential of wind generation in Georgia.
Formed in 2001, Green Power EMC is a joint effort by 17 of the states electric cooperatives, including Coweta-Fayette EMC, to generate energy from renewable resources.
The test site is located atop Oglethorpe Power Corporations Rocky Mountain Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Plant in Floyd County. A stand-alone wind assessment tower has been installed by Renewable Generations, Inc., at the edge of the pumped storage facility to collect various wind-related data over a 12-month period. The 60-meter-tall wind assessment tower contains anemometers, a thermometer and other recording equipment that will be used to create profiles of wind speeds and directions.
A number of other states have initiated wind power generation, including a number of Midwest states and Tennessee, said Green Power EMC President Michael Whiteside. While we may not have a significant potential for wind power resource development within our state, we feel if there is an economic resource it may be at Rocky Mountain or another north Georgia location. This study will tell us if this area has enough potential to justify the installation of small-scale generation.
Green Power EMC has been successfully generating electricity from renewable resources such as landfill gas for nearly two years. At the same time, Green Power has been seeking other renewable resources to add to its generating capacity, and recently added a low impact hydroelectric generating plant at Tallassee Shoals in Athens.
A portion of the price paid by Green Power subscribers goes toward research and development. By subscribing, Green Power customers not only purchase some of their current power needs from renewable resources, they also contribute to exploring new Georgia renewable resources and technologies, Whiteside noted.
Green Power EMC has generated more than 50 million kilowatt hours of electricity from landfill gas, Georgias most abundant and economical renewable resource, at two sites that began operating in October 2003.
That is enough electricity to supply more than 4,000 homes for an entire year from a renewable resource, said Whiteside.
The Roberts Road landfill facility in Fayette County generates one megawatt of power to the statewide electric grid, along with four megawatts of electricity generated at the Taylor County landfill, the site of Georgias first renewable energy facility.
Customers signing up for Green Power pay an additional charge each month ranging from $3 to $5 per kilowatt-hour block, depending upon the participating EMC.
Participants in Green Power EMC include Carroll EMC of Carrollton, Cobb EMC of Marietta, Coweta-Fayette EMC of Palmetto, Diverse Power of LaGrange, Habersham EMC of Clarkesville, Irwin EMC of Ocilla, Jackson EMC of Jefferson, Lamar EMC of Barnsville, Ocmulgee EMC of Eastman, Sawnee EMC of Cumming, Snapping Shoals EMC of Covington, Tri-County EMC of Gray, Walton EMC of Monroe, Coastal Electric Cooperative of Midway, Jefferson Energy Cooperative of Wrens, GreyStone Power Corporation of Douglasville, and Flint Energies of Reynolds. All are electric cooperatives owned by the members they serve.
Coweta-Fayette EMC is a consumer-owned cooperative providing electricity and related services to 65,000 members in Coweta, Fayette, Clayton, South Fulton, Heard, Spalding, Meriwether and Troop counties.
For more information on Green Power EMC, visit www.greenpoweremc.com.
Copyright 2004-Fayette Publishing, Inc.