"I’m excited that so many manufacturers are jumping on board," said SWCC’s Technical Director Brent Summerville. "Eighteen companies have now publicly recognized they need to certify their turbines, which will benefit the whole industry and drive growth."
Independent certification by SWCC has been identified as a pathway to eligibility for numerous incentives. Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy has established a new provisional incentive for small wind turbines that are pending certification, and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) accepts SWCC certification for qualification for rebates.
Many states are following the lead of Oregon, New York, and Wisconsin in making plans to require certification for small wind turbines to qualify for incentives. The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) now requires either SWCC certification or NYSERDA qualification. Programs in California, Colorado, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, and Vermont have indicated their intention to follow suit.
SWCC expects to issue its first easy-to-understand consumer label within the next six months. "Our certification labels allow easier comparison shopping and will help small wind turbines gain mainstream acceptance," said Larry Sherwood, SWCC’s Executive Director. "We’re eager to transition our robust list of pending applicants to certified turbine labels."
SWCC began accepting applications in February 2010 to verify the durability, function, power performance, and acoustic characteristics of small wind turbines in accordance with the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) Small Wind Turbine Performance and Safety Standard, and has started reviewing initial applications and auditing test sites.
SWCC has pending applications from Bergey Windpower, Eveready Diversified Products, Polaris America, Urban Green Energy (2 models each); and American Zephyr, Cascade Engineering, Endurance Wind Power, Enertech, Evance Wind Turbines, Potencia Industrial, Renewegy, Seaforth Energy, Southwest Windpower, Taisei Techno, UrWind, Ventera Energy, Windspire Energy, and Xzeres Wind.