Using wind turbines for farming is ideal because:
• wind energy is a clean, emission free, renewable energy source
• it makes your farm energy independent
• the investment can save you money over time
1. What will the energy be used for? Do you have an off-grid system (where all of the energy used on the site must be generated there)? You may also choose to connect your system to the utility system’s grid and use that grid for an energy back up. Further, you could decide to sell the energy back to the utility company to supplement your farm’s income.
2. Will the system offset some or all of the energy consumed on site? If so, check your state’s net metering laws which can help with the economics of your project.
3. What are your energy motivations and how important is energy cost to you? Are your intentions to install a wind turbine on your farm environmental or for energy independence? Cost of energy can play a big factor in your decision. In general, you can assume that as system size increases the cost per installed kW will decrease, thus improving economics.
4. What is your budget? This can be the largest limiting factor when considering the purchase of a small wind system. Many grant and other federal or state funded programs are available and most wind turbine manufacturer’s offer leasing options.