Wind Turbines – Harvesting the Wind

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ambience: wind

Farmers along Minnesota’s Buffalo Ridge have gotten used to living and working outdoors with a good stiff breeze blowing – – but after a California energy company came along and recruited them in the exploration for renewable resources, local families found themselves with a new cash crop — the wind. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet, presented by DuPont.

“We would put up a tower about a 150 to 180 feet tall with four different levels, and we’d take wind direction and wind speed readings on it.”

For years Conrad Schardin has farmed soybeans, corn, and hay on the Buffalo Ridge. For some extra income he helped energy companies erect their wind towers in the area. Nowadays he lists wind farming as another cash crop.

“I, first of all, started working for Cenetec Wind Power Company in California putting up test towers on ’em, throughout the whole ridge here, about a hundred mile radius is where I worked. And then they started, contacting land owners where they thought the wind would be a good resource and started selling what we called wind easements to ’em. And basically what that gives ’em the right to do is have the control of the wind that blows over my farm. I don’t have any turbines on my farm, but I have about eight turbines on the land that I sub-lease, and farm around them turbines. As far as farming practice, it doesn’t hinder anything. I would say ninety-nine percent of the farmers are supportive of this. It’s been another kind of cash flow to our farming operation. Some farmers have, ah, wind easements, so they’re getting paid a royalty per year on the wind towers. Some were paid a one-time payment. It depends on what company you signed your contract or wind easement with. So, it’s kind of a nice cash crop. The wind always blows and there’s always some income generated with it.”

Please visit our website at pulseplanet.com. Pulse of the Planet is presented by DuPont, bring you the miracles of science for 200 years, with additional support provided by the National Science Foundation.

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Wind Turbines - Harvesting the Wind

Crop farming and energy production are compatible, as wind turbines whoosh amidst corn fields of the Midwest.
Air Date:10/25/2006
Scientist:
Transcript:

music
ambience: wind

Farmers along Minnesota's Buffalo Ridge have gotten used to living and working outdoors with a good stiff breeze blowing - - but after a California energy company came along and recruited them in the exploration for renewable resources, local families found themselves with a new cash crop -- the wind. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet, presented by DuPont.

"We would put up a tower about a 150 to 180 feet tall with four different levels, and we'd take wind direction and wind speed readings on it."

For years Conrad Schardin has farmed soybeans, corn, and hay on the Buffalo Ridge. For some extra income he helped energy companies erect their wind towers in the area. Nowadays he lists wind farming as another cash crop.

"I, first of all, started working for Cenetec Wind Power Company in California putting up test towers on 'em, throughout the whole ridge here, about a hundred mile radius is where I worked. And then they started, contacting land owners where they thought the wind would be a good resource and started selling what we called wind easements to 'em. And basically what that gives 'em the right to do is have the control of the wind that blows over my farm. I don't have any turbines on my farm, but I have about eight turbines on the land that I sub-lease, and farm around them turbines. As far as farming practice, it doesn't hinder anything. I would say ninety-nine percent of the farmers are supportive of this. It's been another kind of cash flow to our farming operation. Some farmers have, ah, wind easements, so they're getting paid a royalty per year on the wind towers. Some were paid a one-time payment. It depends on what company you signed your contract or wind easement with. So, it's kind of a nice cash crop. The wind always blows and there's always some income generated with it."

Please visit our website at pulseplanet.com. Pulse of the Planet is presented by DuPont, bring you the miracles of science for 200 years, with additional support provided by the National Science Foundation.

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