Cascade Community Wind Co. (CCWC) devised an inventive way of financing community-supported wind projects, which are costly to construct but provide clean, economical, local energy. CCWC offers “subscriptions” for one percent of a turbine’s cost, sells the power to the local utility under a 20-year contact and divides the income among subscribers. Payments are actually made as credits on the subscriber’s electric bill and CCWC estimates that over 20 years subscribers will receive as much as 40% more than their one-time subscription fee. Using this method, CCWC developed three wind projects in rural Washington. Changes in tax incentives and the lower price of electricity because of fracking for natural gas have made it difficult to develop new projects.
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