In the summer, the dozens of flags on top of Port Huron’s Great Lakes Maritime Center flap in the ample wind of Vantage Point.
Now, the St. Clair County Regional Educational Service Agency is hoping to harness that wind and make it part of teaching students at its Technical Educational Center.
Workers on Tuesday erected a 90-foot pole that will hold a wind turbine at Vantage Point. Charlie Andrews, director of administrative services at RESA, said monitoring readings from the 10-kilowatt turbine combined with yet-to-be-constructed solar panels will be part of the school’s curriculum.
The information from the turbine will be downloaded onto a Web site — which will be shared with St. Clair County Community College and be available at the Maritime Center — to be used for alternative energy classes, Andrews said.
“We know it is windy down there, so we think we will get some very interesting results,” Andrews said.
The project cost is about $203,000. About $45,000 of that is being covered by a grant from the Michigan Renewable Schools program, an effort of the nonprofit Energy Works Michigan. The remainder will be paid by RESA.
Emile Lauzzana, director of the nonprofit, said the group is working with about 60 schools throughout the state to spread the word about renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Schools such as RESA that are developing such curricula are preparing students for the “burgeoning green economy.”
“There is a lot of movement toward a green economy in Michigan,” he said. “We feel it is important to build that capacity in our (schools).”
Andrews said the wind turbine will provide energy for the city’s water works building, which is west of the Maritime Center. He said work on the solar panels will start in the next few weeks.
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Source: Energy Works Michigan