By Nino Marchetti | 08 December 2010, 16:04 BST
Xzeres Wind, a developer of small wind power systems, is looking to turn your off-grid wind turbine solution into a mini utility from which it would sell power back - to you we assume - in exchange for what it says is a model that would "eliminate upfront capital costs and other operational barriers." It is calling this a Micro-Generation Utility model and claims it is the first small wind power systems company "to adopt a 'wind-as-a-service' business model, taking advantage of a similar, but uniquely different, PPA financing mechanism that has accelerated commercial solar installations over the past few years."
Xzeres said its model, which will work initially with its Xzeres 442 10kW small wind power system and equivalent marine unit, is designed for a typical installation of up to 50 turbines, depending upon site characteristics. If the company chooses to enter into an agreement with a potential site placement, it will as part of the package conduct a site assessment for power potential, handle the permitting, do the installation and handle the grid connection as well as the management and support of the wind power systems.
Plans would be in place, said Xzeres, to sell the energy generated by its wind power systems, onsite at a discounted price below the local utility rates via power purchase agreements (PPAs). This model reportedly would provide customers "with clean, renewable energy while serving as a hedge against volatile electricity rates for 20+ years," reaping what is said to be "long-term cost savings with their energy bills without the long-term risk of rising electricity rates."
At the end of the contract term, it was added, the end user customer then owns the wind power systems for a significant portion of its remaining useful life and "continues to enjoy the ongoing benefits of onsite energy production from the systems with no further costs." As for the motivation behind doing this, Xzeres believes these type of small wind power installations can offer it "a high margin, recurring, revenue stream."
Source: Earth Techling