Save the Dates: July 20-21, 2011 for Indiana Renewable Energy Conference

For more details and updates CLICK HERE.

WIndiana 2011 will be even Even Bigger and Better!

After 3 years of being Indiana’s only statewide wind industry conferences WIndiana 2011 is expanding to include the Indiana Renewable Energy Conference. Plus this year the Indiana Renewable Energy Association will be involved in the planning and presentation of entire track of “how-to” sessions for residential and small business owners on wind, solar PV and solar thermal systems.

DATES: July 20-21, 2011

PLACE: Indianapolis Convention Center

This year’s conference will include:

  • Sessions on Utility-level Wind, Solar, Biomass
  • How-to sessions for residential/small business Wind-Solar PV- Solar Thermal
  • National and State Speakers
  • Wind farm Tour-Solar Installation Tour-Biomass Tour
  • Expanded Exhibition Floor and hours
  • Continuing Education sessions for K-12 teachers

Registration Opens Soon!

Come back here and check for the opening of registration, or follow us on Twitter: IndianaEnergy

Interested in being a sponsor or exhibitor at WIndiana 2011? Click Here for Details.

This information brought to you by the Indiana Renewable Energy Association.

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ECI Wind and Solar Selected to Install Wind and Solar Systems at Taylor University

January 11, 2011

News Release

Upland, Ind. — ECI Wind and Solar, owned by Craig Porter and Eric Cotton of Lafayette, has been awarded a contract to install two wind turbines as part of Taylor University’s $41.5 million science construction project. Additionally, students from Ivy Tech’s Lafayette campus will serve internships during the project.

According to company CEO Eric Cotton, ECI Wind and Solar, based in Fairmount, Ind., has installed a number of renewable energy systems throughout the State of Indiana. Taylor officials say the renewable wind energy is a component of their efforts to earn LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) green building certification for the new complex, scheduled for opening in the fall of 2012.

At a cost of $700,000, the Taylor University project consists of two Endurance E-3120 50 KW wind turbines, which will be installed on 120 foot monopole towers. ECI will also install a 10 KW solar photovoltaic system on the new science complex.

Cotton said the project represents a significant milestone in the growth of ECI Wind and Solar. “This project will allow us to expand our workforce. It is a great example of how renewable energy projects lead to real economic development while providing energy independence, educational experience, and environmental benefit,” he said.

Isaac Slaven, Program Chair for the Sustainability program at Ivy Tech’s Lafayette campus said, “This is the exactly the kind of opportunity for which we have been preparing our students; first as interns, then as graduates ready for the renewable energy workforce.”

About ECI Wind and Solar: ECI Wind and Solar designs and installs turnkey renewable energy solutions and has installed some of the most notable Renewable Energy Systems in the State of Indiana, including the largest battery based system in the Midwest.

Source: ECI Wind and Solar INC

ECI Wind and Solar is a founding member of both the Indiana Renewable Energy Association and Indiana Distributed Energy Advocates.

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Renewable energy ordinance passed in Naperville, IL

Original article:

By Jenette Sturges

Last Modified: Dec 23, 2010 03:12AM

There was a lot of wind blowing through the council chambers Tuesday night, but after an hour and a half’s discussion, council members finally agreed — small wind turbines are in.

The Naperville City Council voted 6-3 Tuesday to approve an ordinance that adds a Small Wind and Solar Energy Systems chapter to the city’s code book.

The new ordinance permits small wind roof-mounted turbines in commercial and industrial districts and ground-mounted wind systems in industrial districts. Both ground and roof-mounted turbines are allowed in all other zoning districts — including residential neighborhoods — so long as owners are willing to have their proposed turbines vetted through the city’s lengthy conditional use process.

“I think we made the right decision in not eliminating it from the residential areas, but to take each individual case as it comes along,” said Mayor A. George Pradel. “Because we don’t even know how much interest there is in it or how viable it is for the area.”

The conditional use process, which requires a hearing before the Plan Commission and City Council approval before a turbine could be installed, would give the city and nearby neighbors opportunity to weigh in on individual proposals.

Two options were presented to the council Tuesday night, both more restrictive than the ordinance finally passed. One proposed wind ordinance would have prohibited wind systems entirely from Naperville until they could be studied further, and the other prohibited wind systems in residential districts.

Both also include a plethora of other restrictions for wind turbines and solar panels, including height, setbacks, signage and color.

But council members ultimately came down in favor of wind, or at least considering different wind systems in an effort to spur further improvement of the technology.

“We need to put the issue out there to challenge people on the issue of sound,” said Councilman Doug Krause. “We could still be using Apple IIe computers, but things change. We’re looking for something that’s compact, that’s quiet, and if you don’t challenge them, it’s not going to happen.”

Exactly what criteria the Plan Commission and council will use to determine if a wind system is appropriate for Naperville residences was not decided upon, but guidelines established in a previous version of the ordinance included 60-foot height restrictions and a setback 1.1 times the height of the turbine. Sound was another concern for council members who feared disruption in neighborhoods from a noisy turbine.

Council members also discussed the return on investment for these systems, which cost thousands, even tens of thousands of dollars, but did not determine whether an individual’s ability to save money with a turbine or solar panels would be a factor in approval.

“When you look at our consumption, there’s zero return on investment now,” said Jodi Trendler of Naperville for Clean Energy and Conservation, the group that has been pushing for approval of renewable energy. “Everything you do will be a return compared to what you have now.”

Councilmen James Boyajian, Paul Hinterlong and Richard Furstenau voted against the ordinance’s adoption.

“There is a place for research and development. I’m just not sure it’s in my backyard or my neighbor’s backyard,” said Boyajian. “It’s like we’re not ready for this yet, which is why I’m not supportive of the wind element.”

Most council members did favor the ordinance’s new guidelines for how solar panels should be implemented.

Both ground-mounted and roof-mounted solar systems would be permitted in commercial areas but would need to go through the conditional use process before being built in neighborhoods.

This article brought to you by the Indiana Renewable Energy Association.

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Richmond Power & Light (RP&L) might buy excess power

Original Article:

Utility considers allowing customers with wind, solar power or generators to sell power back

By Pam Tharp • Correspondent • November 8, 2010

Richmond Power & Light customers who also generate their own power might soon be able to sell extra kilowatts to RP&L.

Customers with wind or solar power systems or generators could sell their excess power back to the electrical grid if RP&L adopts a net metering ordinance, RP&L general manager Steve Saum said. The RP&L board will review a proposed ordinance for net metering at its Nov. 15 meeting.

The amount of electricity a customer could sell to the grid is limited to 10 kilowatts at any one time. Customers with higher generation capacity would need an agreement with the Indiana Municipal Power Agency, Saum said.

RP&L charges its customers 7.5 to 8 cents per kilowatt hour. Customers with extra power to sell would be paid at half of that rate, about 4.5 cents, because the higher rate includes the utility’s fixed costs for line maintenance and overhead, Saum said.

Saum’s unsure how many customers are generating power using solar panels or wind turbines but said he’s had some inquiries about selling power back to the grid.

“Green” energy systems that power the sustainable living house at Centerville’s Cope Environmental Center have transferred 540 kilowatts to Whitewater Valley REMC since April 2009, said Cope executive director Stephanie Hays-Mussoni. A 1-kilowatt wind turbine and a 900-watt solar panel power the sustainable living house.

Cope staff gets numerous inquiries about wind and solar power for home use, Hays-Mussoni said. Few follow through because of the substantial capital investment required — about $20,000 to $25,000 for the systems and extra insulation, she said.

“We aren’t currently selling the power back, but it does go back to the grid,” Hays-Mussoni said. “It’s not a whole lot of power. The turbine and solar panel provide 60 percent of the energy used by the residents of the sustainable house throughout the year. The systems don’t provide energy all the time because sometimes the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow.”

A disconnect switch is required for any system that would send power back to RP&L or other utilities. The switch automatically disconnects the private system line from the utility during a power failure, Saum said. Without the switch, a lineman working on a power failure issue could be injured by electricity flowing back into the line from a home generation system. The disconnect switch also must be inspected by the city building inspector before power sales can begin, Saum said.

RP&L board member Larry Parker was concerned earlier this week about the safety of RP&L linemen if a power outage occurred.

“How will we know if the disconnect switch has been installed?” Parker asked. “I don’t want one of our linemen being killed because of this.”

Those who enroll in the net metering program would be required to sign a form verifying the disconnect switch was installed, Saum said. Linemen also are trained to be cautious during outages, he said.

“If the line is out and we see lights, they know there’s a generator or something producing power in the home,” Saum said.

Board member Jack Elstro questioned the wisdom of the program.

“Why do we want to do this? To me, it’s foolish,” Elstro said.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission is encouraging utilities to allow customers who generate excess electrical power to sell it to the power grid, Saum said.

“The IURC is trying to push it pretty hard. They’ve had complaints from customers whose utility didn’t have a net metering ordinance,” Saum said. “It’s not mandatory yet for utilities to do this. We’re trying to be proactive and be ready to handle it.”

For more information

A customer interested in selling electricity to Richmond Power & Light should contact the utility for additional information, RP&L manager Steve Saum said. The net metering agreement is a legal document that includes acceptance of liability, and the required disconnect switch must be inspected and approved by the city of Richmond’s building inspector, Saum said.

Comment on this story at

This article brought to you by the Indiana Renewable Energy Association.

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Mutz says Lugar plan outshines other energy bills

Written by John Mutz

It’s no secret that Indiana’s economy is struggling to regain its footing. Like the rest of the country, we’ve lost a lot of jobs and our unemployment rate is higher than it has been in many years.

What may be surprising to some, though, are the great strides our state is making in the area of clean energy industries during these difficult economic times.

Relatively quietly, Indiana is making a name for itself as an outstanding place to manufacture electric cars and the batteries that run them, not to mention solar panels and parts for wind turbines.

Gov. Mitch Daniels and his team have rightly begun to focus on this area of opportunity for Hoosiers. Over the last year, Abound Solar in Tipton, Wind Stream Technologies in New Albany, EnerDel in Central Indiana, Anderson-based Bright Automotive, Brevini USA in Muncie, and Elkhart’s Think North America have made headlines for creating jobs and giving our economy a much-needed boost.

A number of well-established companies are also having a huge impact.

Remy International in Pendleton just entered a partnership to bring a new-generation electric drive system to market. Cummins just received more than $38 million in federal grants to develop a highly efficient and clean diesel engine. Allison Transmission’s new hybrid drive manufacturing plant in Indianapolis will employ 100 when it reaches full production.

Duke Energy is investing more than $2.8 billion into its coal gasification plant, which will burn a cleaner gas to produce power.

With these innovations, we’re ahead of the clean energy curve, but now we need some changes to federal policy to remain there. Energy independence should be a priority in Washington. So far the House has passed a bill, and the Senate has not reached a consensus on climate change energy legislation.

One bright spot has been the fact that Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar is among those who believe that the country needs to take steps to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. He’s filed a bill that will cut greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent, or about 1.6 billion metric tons — the equivalent of taking more than 240 million cars off our roads. His bill is a balanced approach that provides a reasonable step toward this goal, and it provides economic incentives that will support the growing Indiana clean energy business.

The evidence that clean energy leads to good, high-paying jobs for Hoosiers is clear. However, if you need more evidence consider this: China vaulted past Denmark, Germany, Spain and the United States last year to become the world’s largest maker of wind turbines and is poised to expand even further. In addition, the Chinese have emerged as the world’s largest manufacturer of solar panels and are pushing hard to build nuclear reactors and the most efficient types of coal power plants.

No matter what the case, we do need additional legislation at the federal level. It is better to consider an approach that doesn’t threaten Hoosier jobs, such as cap-and-trade, but still moves us toward the goal of energy independence. Lugar’s bill does this.

Mutz is a consultant and private investor, former two-term lieutenant governor of Indiana, former president of Lilly Endowment and former president of Cinergy/PSI Indiana.

This article brought to you by the Indiana Renewable Energy Association.

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IU energy seminar series receives successful kick-off, seven speakers to follow during Themester

John Haselden (photo right) of Indianapolis Power and Light (IPL) spoke Sept. 15 as the first guest in The Grand Energy Challenge seminar series. Haselden is currently serving as the Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Indiana Renewable Energy Association. IPL is also a member of the association.

Sept. 16, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — An impressive speaker series on climate change and energy, titled by organizers “The Grand Energy Challenge,” received a successful launch Wednesday (Sept. 15) as part of Indiana University’s fall 2010 Themester: “sustain•ability: Thriving on a Small Planet.”

John Haselden, principal engineer in corporate affairs for Indianapolis Power and Light, spoke on the topic of “Moving to Sustainable Energy Supply,” to an attentive and inquisitive group of students and community members, according to co-organizer Rebecca Barthelmie, an IU professor of atmospheric science. His talk was the first in a series of presentations that will include visits by a Patten lecturer, a leading state energy official, and researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the Colorado School of Mines and Purdue University.

“John was an inspiring speaker who stayed behind to answer a lot of questions from students,” Barthelmie said. “We’ve had to move the talks to larger venues to accommodate the much larger than expected audience. That is excellent, of course, and shows there is a lot of interest.”

The series is being supported by the IU College of Arts and Sciences, a grant from Duke Energy Foundation, and the Multidisciplinary Ventures and Seminars Fund of the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs at IU Bloomington.

Co-organizers of the event with Barthelmie are Sara Pryor, also an atmospheric scientist in the IU Department of Geography, and John Rupp and Maria Mastalerz from the Indiana Geological Survey.

The series will include seven more presentations, listed here:

  • “Coal’s role in Indiana’s future,” by Purdue University’s Tom Sparrow, Wednesday, Sept. 29, from 4-5 p.m. at the Department of Chemistry Building, room 001.
  • “The role of international treaties in tackling climate change,” by Griffith University’s Jean Palutikof, from 7:30-8:30 p.m., Monday, Oct. 11, as part of the Patten Lecture Series. Fine Arts Building, room 015.
  • “Low Impact Fossil Energy: Keystone to Sustainability” by Julio Friedmann, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, on Tuesday, Oct. 12, from 1-2 p.m., at the State Room East, Indiana Memorial Union.
  • “Climate change adaptation strategies: a poor man’s solution?” by Jean Palutikof, Griffith University, from 7:30-8:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 12, as part of the Patten Lecture Series. Fine Arts Building, room 015.
  • “Renewable energy development in Indiana,” by Travis Murphy of the Indiana Office of Energy Development, from 4-5 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 27, at Woodburn Hall, room 100.
  • “Wind energy,” by Matt Hendrickson, Horizon Wind Energy, from 4-5 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 10, at the Dogwood Room, Indiana Memorial Union.
  • “The Global Energy Challenge,” by Roel Snieder, Colorado School of Mines, from 4-5 p.m., Monday, Nov. 15, at the Geological Sciences Building, room 143.

For more information or to speak with Barthelmie or other organizers, please contact Steve Chaplin, University Communications, at 812-856-1896 or


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Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Loans and Grants

Release No. 0410.10


Jay Fletcher (202) 690-0498

186 Projects Help Farmers and Rural Businesses Become More Efficient

Des Moines, Iowa, August 17, 2010  Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA Rural Development is providing $23.4 million in loans and grants for 186 renewable energy and energy efficiency projects under the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). Vilsack made the announcement while visiting the Iowa State Fair.

“President Obama and I are committed to helping our nation become energy independent by helping rural businesses become more energy efficient,” Vilsack said. “This funding will not only help our farmers and small businesses reduce energy costs, but also more efficient and competitive.”

For example, Primus Farms, Inc. of Grundy, Iowa, has been selected to receive a $23,162 grant and a $23,162 loan. This funding will be used to replace an outdated grain dryer with a new, highly efficient grain dryer projecting over 54.58 percent in annual energy savings.

In Franklin, Mass., Berkshire East Ski Area has been selected for a $1.5 million guaranteed loan to assist rural small businesses in developing a renewable energy system. This project will fund a large wind energy generation system that will offset the firm’s energy use and provide a portion for sale.

USDA energy efficiency programs often yield double digit energy savings. The Glen Coble & Sons, Inc., ranch in Mullen, Neb., reduced its electricity draw from the local utility by 30 percent after it received a $14,725 USDA Rural Development grant in 2008 to install five wind turbines.

REAP funding can be used for renewable energy systems, energy efficiency improvements, feasibility studies, energy audits, and renewable energy development assistance. More information on the REAP program, which was authorized under the 2008 Farm Bill, is at:

Funding of each recipient is contingent upon the recipient meeting the conditions of the grant or loan agreement. The following is a complete list of REAP recipients announced today. Award Recipients

Through its Rural Development mission area, USDA administers and manages more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a network of 6,100 employees located in the nation’s capital and 500 state and local offices. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers, and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of nearly $142 billion in loans and loan guarantees.


USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202) 720-6382  (TDD).

For additional information contact:

Sharon Ellison

Rural Development

U. S. Department of Agriculture

5975 Lakeside Boulevard

Indianapolis, Indiana 46278

Phone: 317. 290. 3100 Ext. 429
Fax: 317 .290. 3127

“Committed to the future of rural communities”

“Estamos dedicados al futuro de las comunidades rurales”

This article brought to you by the Indiana Renewable Energy Association.

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