Research Helps Colorado Thrive Using Renewable Energy

Solid research into how renewable energy can bring economic development to rural Colorado yielded two publications offered by the Governor’s Office of Energy Management and Conservation (OEMC) and the Governor’s Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT).

The OEMC initiated these strategic two studies, “The Handbook on Renewable Energy Financing for Rural Colorado” and “Distributed Wind Generation Study for Northeast Colorado,” to help the people of Colorado assess feasibility of renewable energy technologies. They detail existing projects and discuss the potential of renewable energy in driving economic development in rural communities, particularly potential benefits to agriculture, utilities, consumers and other industries in Colorado. “The Handbook on Renewable Energy Financing for Rural Colorado” uses Colorado case studies to examine existing renewable energy projects in biomass, biofuels, hydropower, solar, and others. Descriptions of these commercially available technologies with respect to the financial, environmental, and technological factors are provided in the Handbook. McNeil Technologies received funds from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and OEMC for the Handbook, with the intent to expand the use of renewable energy in the agricultural sector. The second publication, “Distributed Wind Generation Study for Northeast Colorado,” focuses on wind energy’s potential to provide additional power and economic benefits to Colorado. Tom Wind, of Wind Utility Consulting, reports on his research into how large wind turbines could be interconnected with the existing electrical grid system in northeast Colorado. OEMC and DOE’s Wind Powering America program commissioned this study, which used Highline Electric Association’s grid. “Our hope is that these tools will increase renewable energy projects in Colorado while providing affordable and reliable energy sources,” said Drew Bolin, director of OEMC. “These studies will provide rural communities with the necessary tools to utilize this emerging industry and build a diverse economic base,” said Brian Vogt, director of the OEDIT and acting secretary of technology. To access these publications, go to OEMC’s link below and click on “Publications.”
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