Studies Performed: County Wind Resource Mapping, Economic
Impact Analysis, Met Tower Data Management, Full Wind Study, Environmental
Reports, drafting wind-related zoning ordinances
The relationship between Graham County and WECC goes back
many years and can be chalked up to the vision of Kirk Schweitzer, the Graham
County Director of Economic Development. He commissioned WECC to create a
county-wide high resolution wind resource map that would identify the parts of
the county best suited to wind development along with conducting an economic impact analysis to estimate the economic benefit to Graham County and to the
State of Kansas of wind farm installations of various sizes during construction
and afterwards during the operation of the wind farm. These early efforts led
to the installation of meteorological towers in Graham County and the
management and analysis of the wind data produced by those towers.
Since that time WECC has worked with the county in an
advisory capacity as they move closer to wind farm development.
Growing up and living my whole life in western Kansas I knew that blowing wind was just a fact of life. What I did not know was how to turn that fact into something financially good and ecologically safe for our population.
Mike Steinke and associates at WECC were remarkable in filling the gap between us and a multi-million dollar world-wide corporation making both sides feel very comfortable with the transactions in pilot negotiations, ordinance composition, wind resource mapping and general help.
I was literally lost as to how to start such a project as a wind farm, but now I can say that I have no doubts we made the right decision to hire WECC and have never looked back.