Arkansas continues assistance for landowners to quantify wind resources

Thursday, July 01, 2010

The Arkansas Energy Office and the Renewable Energy Department at John Brown University have partnered for a second year to continue the state’s anemometer loan program.

The program allows Arkansans – particularly landowners, farmers, and rural businesses – to measure wind energy potential up to 110 feet in height. 

Last year, 23 applications were received to have the wind on their land measured and analyzed at no cost. Four sites were chosen in an effort to promote wind energy throughout the state. Faculty and students from JBU’s Renewable Energy Program installed four meteorological towers to measure wind speed and wind direction for Terry Dunham of Booneville (Logan County), Thomas and Martha Bush of Romance (White County), Carey and Bill Robertson of Bradford (White County) and Jack Turner of Mansfield (Sebastian County).

 

“We are satisfied with the installations of the first four sites,” said Fernando Vega, director of JBU’s Renewable Energy Program. “We learned some good lessons and gathered a few good installation techniques that we can carry over to this next round. We have streamlined our data analysis process, and JBU students have benefited enormously from the field experience as well as from the wind data collection and analysis procedures. I believe the landowners are excited about their measurements as they take form and we will continue to provide advice to them in the next steps as well. We look forward to this second year of installations.”

The Anemometer Loan Program will begin accepting applications for the second year on July 1, 2010. The deadline to apply for consideration is August 15, 2010. Review of applications and site visits to qualified participants will occur in the fall. Installations will be done in the latter part of the fall as the towers are decommissioned from their current locations. More details about the selection criteria and participant obligations – as well as downloadable application forms – are available from JBU’s Renewable Energy Program website at www.jbu.edu/academics/science/renewable_energy and the Arkansas Energy Office’s website at http://www.arkansasenergy.org/. 

“This has been an exciting inaugural year for the anemometer loan program,” said Chris Benson, director of the Arkansas Energy Office. “We are grateful for the participants who have helped us promote wind energy throughout the state while gathering valuable information for us to use in our energy conservation efforts. We look forward to seeing what new information this year provides.” 

Funding for the Arkansas Anemometer Loan Program comes from both the State of Arkansas and the Department of Energy’s Wind Powering America Program.