The gusts from the winter storm this week may have begun to die, but the winds of March will keep blowing strong for weeks to come. This month is typically one of the windiest times of the year in Minneapolis, but that makes it one of the best times for harnessing wind power.
The graphic above shows roughly how many people in the Minneapolis area over the next four days could get their electricity from wind power generated at the Fenton Wind Power Project in south-eastern Minnesota. The yellow line tracks the National Weather Service’s wind-speed forecast for Thursday through Sunday. The blue bars represent the potential power output from the wind turbines at the Fenton facility, in terms of the number of people those turbines could supply with low-emissions electricity. However, how much electricity is actually generated depends on several factors, like how the wind actually blows, and how many turbines are operational.
On Thursday, which is forecasted to be the windiest of the next four days, wind power could bring electricity to almost 130,000 people.