About a year ago, an energy company started testing parts of northern Boone County for wind energy potential. The data is in, and some big changes will soon be blowing into the area.
After more than a year of data collection, Enexco Energy says mother nature could become one of the area's biggest energy providers. Six months ago, Enexco Energy put up a test tower on Jack Ferry's Caledonia Farm. It uses a solar powered cell phone to call in information. Last week company leaders came to northern Boone County to update project participants on the findings.
While the data from the tower is positive, Enexco still face some challenges. The company still needs to secure distribution lines and customers
"We're working with the power company now. It's a very involved process. But we hope within a month it will be finalized. And in 2004 we'll start digging some holes."
As this project goes forward, there's talk of bringing wind turbines to farmland in Stephenson County. Ferry says he'd recommend it to anyone
"Two to three rows I have to pick corn for the squirrels but that's it. I can't get the combine back here but other than that it hasn't effected the operation."
More importantly, Ferry believes by harnessing the wind he can help the local economy and the environment. Enexco is talking with ComEd about distribution. The Minneapolis company hopes to build 67 turbines in northern Boone County.