Learn about Windsource from Xcel! SECIA Service Learners get the word out

posted Jan 12, 2009, 3:36 PM by Stephanie Hankerson

Your browser may not support display of this image. WINDSOURCE  for U

What is WindSource?

  • A program that invests in pollution-free renewable energy ("green") technologies that would enable them to phase out their dependence on fossil fuel and its attendant problems.
  • Windsource allows Xcel Energy to develop wind resources in areas of Minnesota where wind may not be as competitive with other forms of electricity.
  • Purchasing Windsource energy shows demand for renewable energy and financially supports making wind energy a greater source of electricity in Minnesota by increasing the total amount of green electricity that travels over the system.
  • In the first two years of the program Windsource power purchased by Minnesotans resulted in over 30 new wind turbines. 

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For only a buck or two per month, you can help curb harmful pollution and help Minnesota's rural economy by switching to clean, renewable Windsource! 

Economic Benefits of Wind Power

  • Income generated by Wind Turbines stays in the country, instead of going to overseas oil companies.
  • Wind Turbines also create local jobs for installation and maintenance.
  • Wind Turbines can be placed in remote locations as long as substantial amounts of wind are present.
  • Wind Energy is the most cost effective of the environmentally-friendly energy sources.
  • Wind power supplies affordable, inexhaustible energy to the economy.
  • Wind farms can revive the economy of rural communities, providing steady income through lease or royalty payments to farmers and other landowners.

Environmental Benefits of Wind Power

  • Wind energy system operations do not generate air or water pollution or hazardous waste.
  • Harnessing wind power does not deplete other energy sources such as coal, oil, or gas, or cause environmental damage through resource extraction and transportation.
  • Development of 10% of the wind potential in the 10 windiest U.S. states would supply more than enough energy to reduce total U.S. emissions of CO2 by a third.
  • In 2006, The American Wind Energy Association estimated that wind plants in the U.S. will generate 24 billion kilowatt-hours. That’s enough to cut15 million tons of carbon dioxide, 76,000 tons of sulfur dioxide, and 36,000 tons of nitrogen oxides.

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How much does Windsource cost?

The answer is less than you might think. In 2007, the average monthly cost of Windsource was an additional $0.81 per 100 kWh block. For the average house that used 675 kWh per month, Windsource cost an additional $5.47 per month.

Below is a table of the amount of energy used and the cost of Windsource per month for a one-person home. This person paid less than two dollars per month to have 100% of his energy come from wind power! .

  2007 kwh 2007 Wind-Source net costs cost per 100kWh 2008 kwh 2008 Wind-Source net costs
JAN 306     305 $1.55
FEB 294 $3.31 $1.13 325 $1.89
MAR 240 $2.30 $0.96 279 $2.37
APR 214 $1.48 $0.69 218 $2.50
MAY 129 $1.06 $0.82 177 $0.43
JUNE 164 $1.26 $0.77 261 $0.62
JULY 437 $0.67 $0.15 371 $0.24
AUG 459 $1.99 $0.43 361 $0.17
SEPT 301 $3.28 $1.09    
OCT 185 $2.66 $1.44    
NOV 190 $2.72 $1.43    
DEC 292 $3.04 $1.04    
Totals 3211 $23.77      
     Avg. cost per 100kwh: $0.90    



How much electricity does one turbine produce?
An average one megawatt wind turbine will produce enough energy for the annual needs of 350 average households.

How much land does the turbine take up?
The actual space that a turbine tower occupies is small; usually less than 100 square feet.

Is there an issue with bird mortality?
Migratory bird “flyways” make a minimal impact on bird populations. In fact, overhead high-voltage power lines and automobiles pose significantly greater threats to birds than do wind turbines.

What is the noise like at a windmill?
Modern wind turbines produce almost no mechanical noise. Typical noise levels are less than 50 Db on the ground below the blades, equivalent to the sound of normal conversation.

How much wind power is currently being produced in the United States?
According to the American Wind Energy Association, the total U.S. production of wind power is around 6,740 megawatts. This is enough energy to power over 2 million US households.

How much wind power could the U.S. produce?
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, all U.S. electrical energy needs could be met by the wind in Texas and the Dakotas alone. 


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Educate Yourself.

Know and understand the benefits of renewable resources and you will be better prepared to explain them to your relatives, friends, and neighbors.

Actively Advocate.

Activism is an important part of the development of renewable resources. Vote for candidates who support wind power. Petition, write, call, fax, or email your elected officials.

Sign up for WindSource!

While these actions will help shape the public debate and increase the acceptance of wind and other renewable sources of energy, the most important determinant of the success of wind power will be market acceptance.

Call Xcel: 1-800-895-4999



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