Walmart won’t actually own the turbine – Foundation Windpower will. Just like many solar companies, Foundation Windpower finances, builds and maintains its power generating systems for customers. With federal and state subsidies often helping, the company is then able to sell the power to the customer at a price below utility rates.
Foundation has three other onsite wind power projects in place in California, and a handful more under construction. One of the functioning turbines is a 1.5-MW model at the Anheuser-Busch brewery in Fairfield. It was commissioned in November last year and is expected to produce 3.5 GWh of power annually.
The single largest onsite wind project in the United States, according to the American Wind Energy Association, is the two-turbine, 3.3-MW installation at haircare-products manufacturer Zotos’ plant in Geneva, N.Y. Not far behind is the project unfolding at SC Johnson’s Waxdale plant in Wisconsin. Before the end of the year, two 1.5-MW turbines there are expected to be producing 8 GWh a year of power, about 15 percent of the energy used at the plant, according to the company.
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