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1 An Overview of Small Wind Energy Today Shawn Shaw The Cadmus Group, Inc. Sierra Club Northeast Committee Fall Energy Conference 10/12-10/14/2007.

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Presentation on theme: "1 An Overview of Small Wind Energy Today Shawn Shaw The Cadmus Group, Inc. Sierra Club Northeast Committee Fall Energy Conference 10/12-10/14/2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 An Overview of Small Wind Energy Today Shawn Shaw The Cadmus Group, Inc. Sierra Club Northeast Committee Fall Energy Conference 10/12-10/14/2007

2 2 The Cadmus Group Environmental Consulting firm specializing in energy, drinking water, and risk management Based in Watertown, MA 150+ employees worldwide

3 3 Clean Energy Practice Field inspections of renewable energy systems –>50 small wind inspections to date –>100 PV inspections to date Program support and production tracking for state renewables programs Renewable energy program evaluation Energy efficiency in appliances and buildings

4 4 Small Wind? Mostly 10 kW or Less Mostly 80-120 ft Tall 100 ft Tower 7 ft Blade Length 200-300 ft Tower 100 ft Blade Length

5 5 Why Small Wind? Reduce energy costs Help the environment Make a statement Backup power –Need batteries

6 6 A Typical Wind Energy System Wind Turbine Home Circuit breaker box & Utility net meter Controller, inverter The grid DCAC

7 7 Factors Affecting Energy Output Available Wind Resource Site Conditions/Terrain Tower Height

8 8 Assessing the Wind Resource for Small Systems Wind maps Local clues –Tree flagging –Nearby weather stations Airports Schools

9 9 Spotting a Potential Site Flagging vegetation Constant breeze Bodies of water Open terrain Slope

10 10 The Wind Resource in Southern New England Good wind resource in coastal areas and mountainous regions Cape Cod Berkshires Marthas Vineyard Look for wind speeds > 5 m/s at 30m for good small wind potential 10% difference in wind speed ~ 33% more energy!

11 11 The Importance of Wind Speed

12 12 Obstacles Create Turbulence and Reduce Apparent Wind Speed

13 13 Site Conditions Affect Energy Production

14 14 Good Site Characteristics Open access to prevailing wind >100 ft from neighbors Downward sloping terrain Bodies of water Close to electrical interconnection point

15 15 The Importance of Tower Height for Non-Ideal Sites Assumes: 6 m/s wind speed at 70m, rough terrain, 50 ft surrounding trees, 10 kW Bergey Excel-S turbine used for example calculations

16 16 Basic Small Wind Economics 10 kW System, good site, 100 ft tower, utility interactive (no batteries) –15,000 kWh/yr –$3,000/yr revenue –Installed Cost: $60,000 –MTC rebate: $22,500 (example) –Simple Payback: 12.6 yrs –System Lifetime: 20+ yrs

17 17 The Small Renewables Initiative Provides incentive for residential scale renewable energy projects (up to 10kW) Covers solar PV, wind, and small hydro projects Approximately $3.6M available annually

18 18 SRI Rebate Matrix

19 19 SRI Small Wind Requirements Follow all applicable codes/standards Hub height must be 30+ ft above all surrounding obstacles Estimated capacity factor 10%+ All new equipment Wet stamped engineering plans Inspected/approved by Code officials

20 20 Other Incentives/Programs in the Northeast Incentives/Rebates in: –New York –Massachusetts –Vermont –Delaware –Maryland –New Jersey Tax Exemptions/Credits in: –Massachusetts –Maryland –Rhode Island –Vermont Proposed federal tax credit in House and Senate –HR 1772 and 2776 –S. 673 –$3,000 per kW tax credit for small wind systems

21 21 Small Wind Applications Schools Farms Homes Businesses Public buildings Remote areas

22 22 Environmental Benefits of Small Wind 16,000 lbs CO2/Yr 2 Acres of Forest Planted 1 SUV Taken Off the Road 10 Tons of Coal/Yr Not Burned

23 23 Small Wind: An Ally Against Habitat loss Groundwater pollution Climate change Power plant emissions

24 24 Impacts of Small Wind Turbines Wildlife Land area Noise View shed Little impact from small wind systems

25 25 Small Wind Walks on the Wild Side Even a 100 fold increase in the use of wind power would produce less bird deaths than our current use of communication towers and similar structures. Small wind turbines are no more likely to harm birds than any other ~100 ft structure.

26 26 But Doesnt Wind Take A Lot of Space? Typical footprint of a residential wind installation: <100 s.f. Source: Pace University, Environmental Costs of Electricity, 1991

27 27 Wind Turbine Noise Noise levels (dB) from wind turbines drop off rapidly with distance Typically, 100 ft from tower base, turbine cannot be heard over ambient noise

28 28 Scenic Impacts

29 29 Regulating Small Wind Turbines in Massachusetts Communities MA Towns Having Draft or Complete Bylaws for Small Wind Turbines Brewster Carver Fairhaven Freetown Harwich Marion Sandwich Others under development (e.g. Westport, Dartmouth, Russell)

30 30 Regulating Small Wind Turbines: Points to Consider Setback from property lines/structures Maximum height Visibility/noise Engineering requirements Zoning restrictions

31 31 For More Information on Small Wind Paul Gipes books AWEA, small wind turbine section – Home Power magazine Mick Sagrillos Videos and articles –(writes for Home Power magazine, etc.) Equipment Mfrs, e.g. Bergey, Southwest, Abundant (ARE) Qualified models: – – Interstate Renewable Energy Council & their Small Wind Web Site Canada has a useful site: Current Bills in Congress of Interest to Wind Energy

32 32 Small Wind as Part of a Climate Change Solution for the NE We cant put up wind farms everywhere Solar PV is not always a good option Buying RECs provides no financial payback Significant environmental benefits

33 33 What We Can Do to Bring More Small Wind to the Northeast Promote sensible bylaws and good installation practices Support tax credits to improve project economics Educate communities about the real benefits and impacts of small wind power

34 34 Thank You Shawn Shaw The Cadmus Group, Inc.

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