GREENSBURG (AP) — The effort to rebuild tornado-ravaged Greensburg as a “green” community will include a wind farm that could power the entire south-central Kansas town.
The city, Kansas Power Pool and John Deere Renewables announced Wednesday that they have agreed to develop the Greensburg Wind Farm. It will eventually include 10 turbines that will provide a total of 12.5 megawatts of power, which supporters say would be enough to power all the town’s homes and businesses.
An EF5 tornado in May 2007 killed 11 people and destroyed or damaged 95 percent of the structures in Greensburg, about 110 miles west of Wichita. Since then, the city’s efforts to rebuild with environmentally friendly methods have drawn national attention.
“The city of Greensburg is thrilled to see this project begin, as it will meet our energy goals to be 100 percent renewable,” Steve Hewitt, Greensburg city administrator, said in a news release. “This model will serve as an example of how communities can meet their sustainable goals through collaboration. Our efforts to be a green community hinge on our energy model.”
The wind farm project will be formally announced May 2 at the reopening of BTI Inc., a John Deere dealership in Greensburg that is rebuilding after being severely damaged by the tornado.
Kansas Power Pool, an energy agency that coordinates and facilitates energy needs for member communities, will buy the electrical output from the Greensburg Wind Farm.
And NativeEnergy Inc., a leader in climate solution services, will buy about two-thirds of the wind farm’s renewable energy credits over 20 years and market them to other entities, bringing in revenues that will help Greensburg’s rebuilding.