Wind turbines to power individual urban homes?POSTED 10/06/10 A Montana city will consider allowing construction of windmills within city limits to power private homes.
A Missoula City Councilor said new technologies allow wind generators to produce power at lower speeds. The windmills are also able to capture wind coming from different directions because of obstacles present in urban settings.
City council meets on Monday, when it will discuss an ordinance for wind energy conversion systems. The most recent draft of the ordinance restricts windmills' height in accordance with Missoula zoning regulations, but households seeking taller wind turbines have the option of appealing for a special use permit.
Opposition to wind turbines includes charges that a turbine is noisy and that entire neighborhoods’ views maybe obstructed while only one household benefits.
The city’s environmental efforts include Green Power Missoula, a voluntary campaign sponsored by the city. By the end of August 2010, participants spent $18.50 (with a minimum of 2.5 purchased at $46.25) to purchase one Renewable Energy Certificate, which represents one megawatt hour of electricity. That is enough to power a home for one month or power a car for 1,500 miles.