Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Residential Wind Generators

Hello dear Reader!

Here's another blog entry from the category of "questions answered in an eMail"

>What do you know about residential windmills?

Here’s what I know about residential windmills:
  • …that in Minnesota any energy produced by the generator that you don’t need can be fed back into the electrical grid, basically turning your meter backwards, i.e., you will earn the residential rate per kilowatt hour (kWh) of energy
  • …that the current electrical rates of about 10 cents per kWh are going up at a rate of 10% each year, basically doubling in price every 7-8 years.

  • …that a small generator (1kW Bergey, like mine) costs about $6-$8,000 to install, but will only produce about 2-5 kWh a day (i.e., the equivalent of 20-50 cents/day or $75-185 a year at the current electrical rates).
  • …that a larger generator (10kw Bergey) costs about $45,000 to install, and will produce about 20-65 kWh a day (i.e., the equivalent of $60 to $200 a month or $750 - $2,400 a year at the current rates)
  • ...that based on where I think I know you live, you have a wind potential of about 3-4 kWh/day with the small one and 35-50 kWh with the bigger one.

  • …that Garwin McNeilus in Dodge Center has had plans to design, construct, and sell 10k, 20k and 40k residential generators for $10k, $20k, and $40k, respectively, but has not gotten anywhere.

  • …that your best bet to do something for the environment is to spend some money on S.M.A.R.T. conservation (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and technology-driven). To make my house work, I first reduced my electrical usage from 30 kWh a day to 30 kWh per week – a reduction by almost 85%.
    If you’d like to learn more, check out my fledgling consulting company at http://consulting.lichtnstein.org

  • …that if your goal is self-sustainability, they work best in a hybrid system using photovoltaic (PV) cells and a wind generator.

  • …that they are beautiful to look at:

[Thank you for reading my blog. Please use the comment feature below because I thrive on feedback ;-) even if you just want to say you stopped by and read it. Thanks!]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi there. Just stopped by and must say your house is impressive. I will shortly buy or build my first own house, and have been thinking a lot about sustainable sources of energy lately.
Your blog will be a great source of inspiration, since I live in cold and windy Denmark. Keep it up!