By investing in a small wind system, you can reduce pollution and reduce your exposure to future fuel shortages and price increases. Deciding whether to purchase a wind system, however, is complicated; there are many factors to consider. But if you have the right set of circumstances, a well-designed wind energy system can provide you with many years of cost-effective, clean, and reliable electricity.
Wind energy systems provide a cushion against electricity price increases. Wind energy systems reduce U.S. dependence on fossil fuels, and they don't emit greenhouse gases. If you are building a home in a remote location, a small wind energy system can help you avoid the high costs of extending utility power lines to your site.
Although wind energy systems involve a significant initial investment, they can be competitive with conventional energy sources when you account for a lifetime of reduced or altogether avoided utility costs. They length of the payback period — the time before the savings resulting from your system equal the system cost — depends on the system you choose, the wind resource in your site, electric utility rates in you're area, and how you use your wind system.
Small wind energy systems can be used in connection with an electricity transmission and distribution system (called grid-connected systems), or in stand-alone applications that are not connected to the utility grid. A grid-connected wind turbine can reduce your consumption of utility-supplied electricity for lighting, appliances, and electric heat. If the turbine cannot deliver the amount of energy you need, the utility makes up the difference. When the wind system produces more electricity than the household requires, the excess can be sold to the utility. With the interconnections available today, switching takes place automatically. Stand-alone wind energy systems can be appropriate for homes, farms, or even entire communities (a co-housing project, for example) that are far from the nearest utility lines. Either type of system can be practical if the following conditions exist.
The state of New Jersey is currently offering up to $50,000.00 for small home wind systems and there is also a Federal tax credit of 30% available. For more information and to get a list of current rebates and tax credits click here