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Willmar Municipal Utilities' wind turbines break record in April, producing 1.4M kilowatt-hours

Willmar Municipal Utilities' two wind turbines produced record output in April — 1,416,112 total kilowatt-hours — more than double the output recorded during the month of April in the years 2018-2021.

Two wind turbines in a field of dried brown grass and trees without leaves.
Willmar Municipal Utilities' wind turbines set a record in April 2022, producing more then 1.4 million kilowatt-hours of energy.
Shelby Lindrud / West Central Tribune file photo
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WILLMAR — A windy April in Willmar led to record-breaking output for Willmar Municipal Utilities' wind turbines.

"As you look at April's wind turbine report, I had to kind of look at it twice when I got it last week. That is a real number," said Kevin Marti, Willmar Municipal Utilities facilities and maintenance supervisor, during his report Monday to the Municipal Utilities Commission.

Availability in April for the turbine designated as No. 3 was 95.8%, and it was 98.8% for turbine No. 4, for 1,416,112 total kilowatt-hours — more than double the output during the month of April in the years 2018-2021. Total kilowatt-hours produced to date in 2022 are 3,716,490, more than half of what has been produced in years 2018-2021.

A chart showing the kilowatt hours of electricity produced by by year by Willmar's two wind turbines from 2018 through April 2022.
The kilowatt-hours of electricity produced by Willmar's two wind turbines increased sharply from March to April 2022, setting a new record more than 300,000 kWh higher than the previous record set in March 2012. The new record is 1,416,112 kWh; the previous record was 1,116,052 kWh.
Contributed / Willmar Municipal Utilities

"Obviously, if you remember back last month, it was very windy out," Marti commented. "So, I got to looking at that number a little bit, thinking that was quite high, and it is."

Since going into service in 2009, the wind turbines located near Willmar Senior High School have gone over 1 million kilowatt-hours only six times, including April 2022. The last time there was a million kilowatt-hour output recorded was in December 2016. The previous record was set in March 2012 with 1,116,052 kilowatt-hours.

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"This last month's record beat it by just over 300,000 kilowatt-hours," he said. "The guys were very excited to see that. They have been working really hard to hit this goal and to set a new record and have been talking about it for quite some time. I just want to give them a shout out for the work that they do to keep the turbines running."

Jennifer Kotila is a reporter for West Central Tribune of Willmar, Minnesota. She focuses on local government, specifically the City of Willmar, and business.

She can be reached via email at: jkotila@wctrib.com or phone at 320-214-4339.
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