ROP board member and member of Concerned Citizens of Coquille Mary Geddry has been working for years to get to this point. Her visionary wind power project that would create jobs, energy independence, and revenue for coastal Coos County and local town school districts, is being considered for funding in Washington D.C. this week.
The project brings dire budget needs together with old Oregon values of self-sufficiency and sustainability, and can be a model for the rest of us. As an Oregonian, and even more so if you are a constituent of Rep. Peter DeFazio, you can play a crucial role in getting this project off the ground. Congress will decide this week whether or not to support it.
To voice your support for the project, send a message to DeFazio here.
Read the letter below for more information about the project, then cut and paste, or write your own. Our support will make the difference this week! To contact Mary with questions about the project, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congressman Peter DeFazio
2134 Rayburn H.O.B.
Washington DC, 20515
Phone: (202) 225-6416
Regarding: Western Oregon Wind Project (WOW)
Dear Mr DeFazio;
Thank you for your support of the WOW project and your concern for local schools.
Western Oregon Wind Project will create regional energy independence and build a diversified, sustainable economic template for coastal communities driven by a clean, renewable energy source. Harnessing the strength of coastal winds with newly engineered proprietary wind technology, the local energy needs of our school districts and county will be met (with the creation of the project’s proposed micro-grid) and a total revenue stream estimated at $3.1 million annual dollars will be created by the micro-grid’s power generation capabilities (based on a 5 megawatt capacity).
Coos County’s $500,000 energy costs per year will be covered by the grid’s power creation (along with the combined power usage of Coos Bay, Coquille and North Bend’s School districts, estimated at $750,000 per year), and the U.S. Coast Guard’s North Bend Air Base annual power usage (estimated at $75,000 per year). Coos County and the school districts (via their individual foundations) will share ownership of the grid, while the coast guard air station will have all of their annual power needs met in exchange for turbine placement.
Direct and indirect jobs creation is a major role in this project’s goals. Direct jobs creation (through the fabrication of wind turbines, the installation, creation of the micro-grid, and the project’s administration) will total 72 excellent family wage jobs. The total revenue stream created by the micro-grid’s power generation ability ($3.1 million dollars each year) will create or save an additional 124 Coos County jobs (based on the 2009 U.S. Governor’s estimate of 40 jobs created for every $1 million dollars of infrastructure spending). The best part of the Western Oregon Wind Project is its newly created revenue stream and power generation capabilities will be permanent, helping to create sustainable economic independence and diversity for what was formerly a long-term chronically depressed economy.
Once created, the project template can be used to support and enhance sustainable economies along the entire Oregon Coast, where economic diversity and support is desperately needed. As the template is adapted along the coast and throughout areas in Oregon (that could directly benefit from wind power generation), the potential jobs creation and economic stimulus resulting for the state in the next decade could conservatively number in the thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars (10 new sites, generating $31 million dollars a year in total revenue for the next 10 years equals 310 million dollars and approximately 2,000 new or annually saved jobs).
Thousands of additional jobs will be saved or created with creation of these micro-grids, as funds that were formerly paid for energy usage (among the city/county/non-profit entities that comprise the wind power cooperative that owns each micro-grid) will now be used for salaries and infrastructure costs. The project has massive economic capability for the state of Oregon and it is an excellent use of taxpayer funds because it represents a hand-up and not a hand-out for our coastal communities. Revenue created by the project will go a long way towards filling local short-falls in education, infrastructure and public safety spending, while giving our neediest communities the satisfaction and pride of economic independence.