As Vermont endures another cold snap, power prices in the region are escalating. However, utility Green Mountain Power (GMP) says power from the company's Kingdom Community Wind (KCW) continues to offset the high peak prices in the marketplace and provide other benefits for Vermonters.
GMP built the 21-turbine project on Lowell Mountain, which is located in Vermont Electric Co-op's (VEC) service territory, and the project came online in November 2012. VEC worked closely with GMP to support the project and is purchasing power generated by KCW.
During the bitter cold in December, GMP says energy prices on the open market hit a high of $0.60/kWh. During that same period, KCW generated enough power for 16,500 homes from low-cost wind, the company adds.
Furthermore, GMP says another important commitment was to give back to surrounding communities by sharing with them the benefits of this project through the Good Neighbor Fund.
‘We are so pleased to announce that thanks to the strong power generation at the Kingdom Community Wind Farm, five Northeast Kingdom towns will receive more than $126,000 this month,’ says GMP President and CEO Mary Powell. ‘The Good Neighbor Fund is an innovative approach by Green Mountain Power to offer direct value to neighboring towns.’
GMP says the communities will continue to get Good Neighbor payments for the first 10 years the plant operates.
Jacques Couture, owner of Couture's Maple Shop/B&B and member of the Westfield selectboard, comments, ‘As a business owner and a selectboard member in Westfield, I really appreciate that Green Mountain Power has deemed it appropriate to create this fund as a gesture of goodwill to the local communities. I see the windmills from my kitchen window every day and I love it. I love that they are generating local power. My guests at the B&B love watching the turbines – I've never heard a negative comment.’