The Governor's Energy Office (GEO) is looking to provide funding to rural Colorado K-12 schools that are interested in installing Southwest Windpower Skystream 3.7 wind turbine on school grounds as part of the Wind for Schools program. This program also provides access to curricula from the NEED project and KidWind to help teachers at the schools more easily teach about wind energy in their classrooms. The Colorado Wind Application Center at Colorado State University (CSU WAC) is teaming up with GEO and will be responsible for the RFA and award process.
Applications will be considered from rural schools in windy areas of Colorado that can demonstrate support for the project from their district, teachers, students, and community. Specifically, applications are requested from schools in areas with a Class 2 (Marginal) wind or better. For your convenience, we have matched up the list of Colorado K-12 schools from the Colorado Department of Education with the Colorado wind map and developed a listing of the expected wind class at each school. You can find the list of schools here.
Rural Colorado counties in the Eastern Plains with significant wind resources include Weld, Morgan, Logan, Sedgwick, Phillips, Yuma, Washington, Adams, Arapahoe, Elbert, El Paso, Lincoln, Kit Carson, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Prowers, Baca, Las Animas, Bent, Otero, Crowley, Pueblo, Fremont, and Huerfano counties. Other counties not on the Eastern Plains that may have a fair wind resource include Moffat, Rio Blanco, Garfield, Jackson, Park, Teller, Conejos, and Costilla counties.
Applicants can check wind class using the Colorado wind map. You can download the a copy of the map at the bottom of the page.
The Governor's Energy Office is providing grant funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). These funds are to be used to offset the costs of the project. It is anticipated that at least eight (8) schools will be selected from this solicitation to receive $10,000 each to help offset the cost to install a Southwest Windpower Skystream 3.7 turbine. An additional cost share of $2,500 - $7,500 is anticipated to be provided by the school. CSU reserves the right to negotiate with awardees in Class 3 winds or greater to allow for larger turbines if desired.
Once the schools are selected as Wind for Schools grant recipients, the process will proceed as follows:
- The Colorado State University Wind Application Center will work with the school to decide on a turbine package based on the needs of the school/district, site and foundation requirements, local zoning issues, and costs.
- If the package is acceptable, the school/district will sign a commitment letter which will start the contracting process at CSU to distribute the grant funds to the school to purchase the turbine and for other installation costs.
- The CSU WAC will work with the school/district and Southwest Windpower to select and order the turbine/tower package and select the a factory-trainer and certified dealer/installer (or competitively bid if required by the school). The school/district will get a line item quote from the dealer/installer and will contract with the dealer/installer for the installation of the foundation, turbine, and electrical connection. The school/district can lower the installation costs by getting in-kind (or in-District) services donated for excavation, trenching, electrical work, etc. The dealer/installer will also be able to assist with warranty and service issues and may be able to offer a service package for annual maintenance.
- The CSU WAC will work with the school/district to get the necessary data (such as soil tests and foundation designs) to assist the school/district in applying for the required Colorado building and electrical permits. For 2011, we will strive to keep a uniform foundation design that will be acceptable at all sites using the most conservative soil conditions to keep permitting costs down.
- The CSU WAC will work with the dealer/installer as necessary to coordinate the installation process and ensure that the wind turbine package is correctly installed and operating. The CSU WAC will also train the appropriate staff regarding the operation of the turbine, the turbine software, and ongoing maintenance requirements for the turbine.
- Ownership of the turbine rests with the host school. Each school is responsible for any additional service or required maintenance of the turbine. The CSU WAC will work with the host school to ensure.
- Once the turbine is installed, the CSU WAC will work with the school to develop and implement a wind education curriculum and teacher training.
This RFA will remain open until September 20, 2011 or sooner if all of the funds have been awarded. Applications will be reviewed at the end of each month. Applications must be received by the COB on the 20th of each month to be considered for review in the current month. It is expected that the successful applicants will be informed within two weeks with the expectation that the siting, planning, and permitting phases will begin during the summer and fall 2011. All grant funds must be spent by December 31, 2011.
A simple eight-question application form is provided for download below. The total length of the application is not to exceed eight (8) total pages. Completed applications should be emailed to Mr. Mike Kostrzewa at the Colorado WAC at the following address:
Applications will be scored in three areas:
- Support (30 points) Applicants will be scored on the support for the project. Does the applicant have support from the school staff, administration, students, and the local community?
- Resources (30 points) Applicants will be scored on the quality of the local wind resource and the applicant’s ability to leverage local funds. How does the wind resource rate in the school’s location? Is the applicant able to leverage in‐kind or financial contributions? Does the school have a site that will accommodate a wind turbine?
- Education (30 points) Applicants will be scored on the number of students that will be impacted by the program, the number of teachers that will promote the curricula, and how many grades will participate in the program.
- Intangibles (10 points) Applicants will be scored on the quality of the proposal, the perceived success of their project, the fit of the school with objectives of the WfS program, etc.
This application attempts to gather all the necessary information required for project selection, including the school’s proposed program. If, at any time, the CSU WAC or GEO determines that additional information is required, it has the ability to reissue, cancel, or modify this RFA without penalty.
For brevity, we've left out information about the GEO contracting and ARRA reporting requirements for the grants. Successful applicants will be required to meet these requirements:
- Monthly financial status reports
- Monthly project hours worked report
- Monthly project status report
For further details about ARRA reporting, see the attachments below.