Through the presidential campaigns, the mainstream media has picked up the once-slightly-wonky fight over the extension of wind energy’s production tax credit (PTC).
“We’re not affected by the PTC; we operate mostly under the ITC,” explained distributed wind vendor Talco Electronics President Tal Mamo, “but because of the politics being played on big wind, we get dragged into it.”
"Distributed wind" is the term for backyard, barnyard, schoolyard and parking lot turbines of less than one megawatt.
“There is a lot of politics being played around energy,” Mamo said. “A lot of it is around big money trying to protect what they have. Unfortunately, with that comes a lot of noise, a lot of misinformation.”
When buyers or installers of distributed wind approach local authorities for permits or zoning considerations, the misinformation creates a backlash, Mamo said. “You’ll have communities that say they don’t want turbines in their backyards. They’re thinking big wind farms. But we’ve got a farmer with 42 acres who wants to put a small turbine in the middle of his farm. And the local counties won’t allow it because neighbors are afraid because of what they’ve heard through the media.”
In an attempt to correct the misinformation, Mamo made a video. He wanted to show the true opportunity wind energy offers.
“A farmer can see how he can reduce his overall cost and save money for future generations,” Mamo said. “And parents and administrators can see how a school can save money by lowering their operational expenses and hopefully keep more teachers on board or hold to some of their afterschool programs. And homeowners and business owners can see how they can reduce their energy costs and save money for other things they need in this tight economy.”
The video is about distributed wind, Mamo said. “It is not big wind farms, where you don’t necessarily feel the effect on yourself. With distributed wind, you get to take advantage of all the positive effects of wind, personally.”
The video, Mamo said, “helps make energy, and specifically wind energy, more personal. You’re not getting energy from some mysterious power plant or utility. You’re producing the energy you are using and saving yourself money.”