Project type : Clean energy from wind power
What they do : Wind turbines capture the kinetic energy in wind and turn it into mechanical power, which is then converted into electricity by a generator.
Where they are : Elk City, Oklahoma
Portfolio Year : 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Standard : Voluntary Carbon Standard 2007
Verifier : SGS Ltd.
About the Project
Red Hills Wind Farm is sited on 5,000 acres of mixed use agriculture and grazing land, ten miles north of Elk City, Oklahoma. The 82 turbines create 123MW of electricity in an area that gets it power predominantly from coal.
The turbines were manufactured in West Branch, Iowa. These turbines stand 80 meters tall with 77 meter-wide rotors and a blade radius of 37.3 meters. The turbines operate at wind speeds of 3-18 meters/second, and rotate at approximately 16.7 rpm. The project is expected to generate enough electricity to power 40,000 homes.
In the community
Extensive permitting and environmental impact assessments (along with voluntary avian and bat studies) were completed to evaluate the projects effects on the local environment. These impacts are primarily related to project construction, including turbine foundations, roads, operations buildings, and the installation of transmission lines and support towers. Construction affects only a small percentage of the projects total 5,000 acres, allowing agriculture and grazing activities to continue.
The project generated significant local construction employment during development, and 15 new, local, full-time permanent jobs related to operations and maintenance. The project secured 23 leases or easements with local landowners across the project area for the turbine pads, access roads, operations facilities and the transmission line path.
The project provides renewable energy to a region that relies predominantly on coal (65%) and natural gas (25%) for electrical production, and has no Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) in place. The project displaces greenhouse gas emissions from grid electricity generation. Local ranching and agricultural activities can continue in the local community.