Turbines over farmland

Information for Landowners

Since landowners are critical to the success of every wind energy project, building the trust of landowners to secure a site for potential development is one of Airstream Energy’s primary objectives.  We commit to listen to you, answer your questions openly and directly, and partner with you to make each project a joint success.  We strive to develop projects that will minimize impacts and maximize benefits for all involved.

Site Prospecting
Prior to engaging landowners, AirStream Energy looks for sites that have a superior wind resource during the Site Prospecting Phase.  We’re looking for average annual wind speeds of 18 miles per hour or higher.  Proximity to existing or future transmission lines is also an important criterion - because we need to make sure we can transport the wind energy to where it can be used. 

When we find the right match of wind and transmission resources, we contact landowners within the prospect boundaries.  During this time we openly discuss your questions and concerns.  Examples include:  How much will I get paid?  Why is AirStream Energy interested in the my land?  When could a project be built?  Who is AirStream Energy?  We also gather feedback on what items need to be addressed at the community and individual levels.  

Landowner Option and Lease Agreements
Airstream Energy provides leases to landowners interested in long-term business relationships. There are essentially three phases to this lease agreement:  the preconstruction development phase, the construction phase, and the operating phase.

The lease gives Airstream Energy the flexibility to move from the development phase to the construction phase if and when the project is ready. In some cases, the project may move from development to construction quickly, but in other cases an extended development period may be needed due to many possible reasons such as:  regulatory changes at the state or federal level, timing of future transmission build-outs, slower growth of the market for wind energy in the area, timing for utility requests for wind energy, etc.  During the development phase, landowners are typically compensated on a per-acre basis instead of a per-turbine basis because the number of turbines on a particular landowner's property could change depending on the wind resource assessment and other factors.

During the negotiations of the land leases, we make frequent visits to the site to ensure good communication between Airstream Energy and our landowners.

Testing the Wind
Once Airstream Energy finalizes a land lease or meteorological station contract with a landowner, AirStream Energy will install meteorological station towers (met stations) within the prospective project area to measure the wind resource.  For a 100 MW project, we typically install anywhere from two to four met stations for the entire area depending on topography and wind characteristics.  Installing a met station does not require major construction so land disturbances are minimal.  Depending on the availability of public or private reference data, which is used to corroborate on-site met station data, wind measurement periods can be as short as 6 months to over 2 years to verify the wind resource within the prospect area.

Advanced Development Activities
Once Airstream Energy has determined a potential project will be capable of producing competitive priced energy, we will undertake additional development activities.  These include: detailed wind resource assessments, project energy assessments, bird and bat studies, preliminary project layouts, geotechnical soil studies, discussions with potential power purchasers, and initiation of formal transmission interconnection and permitting processes.

Once operational, a wind project provides a consistent and reliable long-term revenue source to landowners that complements their existing land uses.  Since royalty payments from wind turbines are immune from the adverse effects of drought, unexpected freezes, volatile crop prices, or insect damage, they can help reduce the cash flow volatility of a landowner’s operation. 

Land Use
The actual land taken out of active agricultural production is only about 0.5 to 1.0 acre per installed turbine.  The primary use of the land is for access roads to the wind turbine locations and a small area for the wind turbine and its electrical transformer. The total amount of area within a wind farm boundary can vary, depending upon wind resource characteristics and land terrain.

email: info@airstreamenergy.com


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