School district missing out on energy savings

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A wind turbine that could save the Sherrard School District nearly $180,000 per year is broken, and has been for nearly one year.

Unit 200 Superintendent Becky Rodocker said the wind turbine has been down since fall of 2012, according to a report by a Mercer County area radio station,

The wind turbine broke during a wind storm, said Rodocker, who shared the information in an interview with WRMJ.

“We had that terrible wind sometime in late October early November and it literally broke the wind turbine,” said Rodocker. “The brake system that’s on the top that keeps it from going crazy and steady actually snapped and we had some damage.”

She said they had been unable to get parts, but with the help of a new company, the parts should be arriving any day.

“It’s been very frustrating to see it sitting there and knowing we could be recouping the energy off those winds,” Rodocker said.

The structure was completed in October of 2008, according to a statement by WPCS International Incorporated.

WRMJ reported that the blades of the wind turbine are 71-feet long from the center. From the ground to the center, the turbine is 160-feet tall. It was built with funding from a $420,000 Illinois Clean Energy Foundation grant. It was a $2 million project.