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Alternative energy firm to study Scofield wind

The Carbon County Planning Commission has granted a conditional use permit for an alternative energy company to erect a 197-foot tall wind measuring tower near Scofield.

John Knight, Senior Project Manager for Element Power of Portland, Ore., told the commission last Tuesday that the tower would hold three anemometers at different elevations to measure and record wind speeds over a three-year period. The proposed site is near the junction of Castle Valley Ridge Rd. and Beaver Rd. in the high country about three miles south of the town.

Wind farms are big, long-term investments, so the study will have to be long term to be sure of conditions.

In response to questions about the visual impact of the tower, Mr. Knight explained that it would be a narrow steel lattice structure secured by guy lines. The anemometer blades would be about three feet in diameter, so the tower would probably not be noticeable to the town or travelers on SR 96.

Element Power has utility-scale solar and wind turbine projects operating and in development in Europe and is pursuing other projects in North and South America. Its principal offices are in Madrid, London and Portland. The company is owned by Hudson Clean Energy Partners, an investment group that focuses on renewable energy projects.

Mr. Knight said he understood his company would have to return to the commission to obtain permission to build wind turbine generators if the meteorological and other factors show such a project would be feasible.

It will take only a day or so to erect the tower.

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