Wind Energy Applications for Municipal Water Services: Opportunities, Situation Analyses, and Case Studies
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As communities grow, greater demands are placed on water supplies, wastewater services, and the electricity needed to power the growing water services infrastructure. Water is also a critical resource for thermoelectric power plants. Future population growth in the United States is therefore expected to heighten competition for water resources. Many parts of the United States with increasing water stresses also have significant wind energy resources. Wind power is the fastest-growing electric generation source in the United States and is decreasing in cost to be competitive with thermoelectric generation. Wind energy can offer communities in water-stressed areas the option of economically meeting increasing energy needs without increasing demands on valuable water resources. Wind energy can also provide targeted energy production to serve critical local water-system needs. The research presented in this report describes a systematic assessment of the potential for wind power to support water utility operation, with the objective to identify promising technical applications and water utility case study opportunities. The first section describes the current situation that municipal providers face with respect to energy and water. The second section describes the progress that wind technologies have made in recent years to become a cost-effective electricity source. The third section describes the analysis employed to assess potential for wind power in support of water service providers, as well as two case studies. The report concludes with results and recommendations.
This information was last updated on 8/9/2011