Dutch Windcentrale offers a chance to own a portion of a local windmill and enjoy a proportionate amount of the green energy it produces.
We’ve seen numerous creative approaches to supplying sustainable energy for home users, but recently one caught our eye that seemed a little different. Targeting consumers unwilling or unable to outfit their own homes with wind or solar energy collectors, Dutch Windcentrale offers a chance to own a portion of a local windmill and enjoy a proportionate amount of the green energy it produces. A brainchild of the Dutch Energy Cooperative with support from the Doen Foundation, Windcentrale gives Dutch households a way to secure their own energy supply for years to come. Toward that end, it has divided up a single windmill’s output into units with an expected wind output of 500 kilowatt hours (kWh) each per year. Interested parties can purchase one or more of those units so as to supply their own household consumption, which averages about 3500 kWh. Power is delivered through the local utility, and during wind-free days it’s supplemented with the utility’s own, traditional supply. When members move, meanwhile, they can simply take their shares with them. Windcentrale is now accepting e-mail addresses of interested Dutch consumers; it needs at least 3,000, and hopes to begin operation of its windmill in Goeree Overflakkee in 2013. Meanwhile, Windcentrale is also looking for other projects that can be operated similarly. One to get involved in early?