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Landfill Gas to Electric
At the Elk River Landfill, Sherburne County, Elk River Municipal Utilities, and Waste Management have partnered to use methane gas produced from the decomposing landfill to fuel 4 electric generators. The generators produce enough energy to power 15% of Elk River’s population. Click the “Landfill Gas to Electric” title above for a video explaining the process.
The Vestas V47 was constructed in 2001 as a demonstration site for Energy City. The 213-ft high wind turbine produces 660 kW which supplies enough energy for 100 homes. Click the “Wind Energy Project” title above to learn more.
Haubenschild Farms Inc. is a nearly 2000 dairy cattle farm using a digester to create methane gas from cow manure to power a generator for their farm plus 75 homes. The farm aims to be earth-neutral.
The Elk River Library provides print and media to the community in a Gold LEED certified building using geothermal heating and cooling and other sustainable building design techniques.
Hometown Solar Panels
City Hall is home to a 5 kW solar installation awarded to the city by Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (MMPA) and their Hometown Solar Grant program. Elk River Library (located across the street) has an educational kiosk that shows real time information about the solar power generated on site.
Wind Turbine at YAC
Thanks to another partnership with MMPA, the Youth Athletic Complex (YAC) has another renewable energy demonstration site in Elk River. A 160 kW wind turbine is now located there, with the hub standing 80 feet off the ground and the blades reaching a height of 215 feet tall.
LEED Certified Schools
Westwood Elementary School: Completed in 2003, Westwood Elementary school was the first school in Minnesota to be LEED-certified. The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System is a voluntary national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings. Annual energy costs at the school are 50% less than the average costs of a school that size.
Twin Lakes Elementary School: Completed in 2007, Twin Lakes Elementary school was the first school in Minnesota to achieve Gold LEED-certification. Again, the school saves 50% of its energy costs compared to a school of comparable size.