28,000 acres secured for wind energy
Consumers Energy has secured more
than 28,000 acres of easements in
Michigan for potential wind generation
development and is starting the process
of testing sites.
Construction started today on four
meteorological towers in Mason County
and three towers in Tuscola County.
Construction of the towers, which
are about 180 feet tall, is expected
to be completed by the end of the
year. In addition to the seven towers
being constructed, Consumers Energy
also will be refurbishing two existing
Mason County towers it has purchased.
“The purpose of the meteorological
towers is to collect wind data over
a two-year period. We’ll be measuring
wind speed, wind direction and air
temperature to determine if the sites
are suitable for wind turbine generators
and the best location for them,”
said George Hass, executive director
of new generation for Consumers Energy.
Construction of the meteorological
towers is part of Consumers Energy’s
Growing Forward strategy, which calls
for investing more than $6 billion
in Michigan, including investments
in energy efficiency, renewable energy,
environmental and customer service
enhancements, and new power generation.
Comprehensive energy reform legislation
signed into law October 6 by Governor
Jennifer Granholm includes a renewable
portfolio standard. That standard
requires Consumers Energy and other
utilities to provide 10 percent of
their electric supplies from renewable
energy by 2015. Approximately five
percent of Consumers Energy’s electric
supply is from renewable energy sources.
Consumers Energy, the principal subsidiary
of CMS Energy, provides natural gas
and electricity to nearly 6.5 million
of Michigan’s 10 million residents
in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.