West School to receive energy grant

ATHENS -- Ohio Governor Ted Strickland announced Oct. 27 that Newcomerstown Exempted Village School District was awarded a $45,000 Appalachian Regional Commission advanced energy grant for a wind turbine project to illustrate energy savings using wind power.

This announcement is one of several last week as Gov. Strickland travels the state to demonstrate Ohio's commitment to a growing advanced energy economy.

"This innovative project at Newcomerstown schools will help Ohioans better understand how incorporating advanced energy sources into our homes and businesses actually saves money," Strickland said. "I applaud the Appalachian Regional Commission's energy grant competition for inspiring the ideas that can help accelerate the growth of Ohio's advanced energy economy."

Strickland, who serves as co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission, joined ARC Federal Co-Chair Anne Pope in announcing the ARC Energy Grant Competition that awarded $760,000 to 18 renewable energy and energy efficiency training and education programs throughout Appalachia. Newcomerstown is the Ohio winner.

The grant to Newcomerstown School District will be used to construct a 10 kilowatt hour wind turbine on a 100-foot tower on the grounds of the district's West Elementary School. This project will help teach students, parents, residents, and school staff about an alternative form of energy production that can save the school district approximately $2,400 to $3,000 in electricity costs per year.

The school district will measure the amount of energy produced by the turbine and post the results on the school's Web site. The school district has also initiated a solar energy plan that will be implemented after the wind turbine project is completed. The school district also will provide training to 20 teachers utilizing the NEED (National Energy Education Development) curriculum for all 320 students at the school.

This announcement comes directly after Gov. Strickland's welcoming remarks at the Appalachian Regional Commission Annual Conference in Athens. The conference, titled New Energy. New Jobs. New Opportunity for Appalachia, is bringing together experts from the private, public and energy industry sectors to discuss the trends in and critical resources for America's new energy economy. Ohio is hosting the 13 Appalachian states for the three-day national conference.