Cornell University To Buy Output From Black Oak Community Wind Farm

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Cornell University has signed up to buy all of the output from the 11.9 MW Black Oak community wind farm, proposed in Enfield, N.Y. The power purchase agreement would cover 20% of the university's annual electricity use.

Project company Black Oak Wind Farm LLC plans to build seven 1.7 MW GE turbines. Financial consultancy Val-Add Service Corp. and developer Juhl Energy are part of the Black Oak team. Tetra Tech Construction will build the project, which is pending municipal approvals.

According to Cornell University, the Town of Enfield board recently accepted the final environmental impact statement for the project. The board is now prepping a findings statement to finish the necessary State Environmental Quality Review, which is expected to be finalized by early 2015.

KyuJung Whang, Cornell's vice president for facilities services, explains that the wind power purchase builds upon the university's sustainability goals.

"Wind is a very reliable source of renewable energy and contributes zero carbon into the atmosphere while generating electricity," he says. "As we use more wind, we reduce our dependence on carbon-produced electricity. This is a major step toward Cornell becoming a carbon-neutral campus."

The Black Oak project also was awarded a 10-year contract with New York State Energy Research and Development Authority for its renewable energy credits.

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