Sep 132004
 
Authors: Megan Buettgenbach

With 90 percent of Colorado customers having the choice to

purchase wind power, it may surprise some people that only 40,000

Fort Collins customers choose to buy it.

These numbers came from John Bleem, division manager of customer

services at the Platte River Power Authority, in a presentation to

the League of Women Voters Monday.

The PRPA provides wind power energy to Fort Collins, Estes Park,

Longmont and Loveland.

This year, CSU became the first university in the nation to

allow individual students to chose whether to purchase wind

power.

As of last week, 160 residence rooms at CSU opted to buy wind

power energy, said John Phelan, an energy services engineer at the

Fort Collins Utilities Wind and Power Program.

“I think it is really important to work on renewable sources of

energy,” said Melissa Kimball, a graduate student studying social

work who was present at the meeting. “I think as a region that we

are not focused on it enough as we should be.”

Bleem said Colorado has “lots of great wind” that could be used

for wind power.

The cost for wind power is more expensive than other options,

but the cost has recently decreased.

The price used to be 2.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, but as of June

it dropped to 1 cent per kwh.

At a cost of $17, CSU students are able to purchase two

semesters’ worth of wind power, an equivalent of 1,600 kwh, Phelan

said.

For any students still interested in buying wind power, the

deadline for applicants is Sept. 30. Call Facilities Management at

491-0151 for more information.

Even though college students are known for having a tight

budget, some believe shoveling out the extra cash is worth it.

Gail Doxtader, utility conservation coordinator for the City of

Loveland, also presented at the LWV meeting.

For an average person to buy wind power for one year, it would

be like driving 3,000 fewer miles, Doxtader said.

“I think the cost is so small and the rewards so great, it would

be absurd not to,” Kimball said.

Travis Kimball, Melissa Kimball’s husband, agreed.

“If you have any interest in our environment, it only makes

sense to put out the little cost that it takes,” Travis Kimball

said. “It’s the absolute least you could do.”

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