FINDLAY, OH (WTOL) - A local company that installs wind turbines for factories is using their construction projects to give back to their community.
For seven years now, One Energy Enterprises, based in Findlay, has built 1 1/2 megawatt wind turbines near large factories in our areas. One Energy then sells the electricity to the plant at a 20 year fixed rate, supplying up to 50 percent of the plants power needs.
Along with building near established businesses, the practice has become a draw for new developments like the Brazilian Based Valfilm and the new Autoliv-Nissin plant.
"We bring all of the capital to the project, we do all of the upfront costs, all of the operations, installation, maintenance," One Energy CEO and General Manager Jereme Kent said. "And then we sell that power at a fixed rate for 20 years."
To help give back to the communities where the turbines are built, with each turbine, One Energy offers a $5,000 a year scholarship to a local student studying in a two or four year STEM degree program called the One Energy Megawatt Scholarship Program.
The new Autolive-Nissin turbine brings the count to eight scholarships for the Findlay area, and nearly 20 for the entire program.
Kent says it is a way to inspire local students to pursue STEM careers and perhaps cultivate potential future employees as well.
"We believe in the communities that we are operating in, and we're really there for 20 years. We put the names of the students who win the scholarships on the side of the turbines, and they'll be there for 20 years right along with it." Kent said. "And so, 20 years from now when those turbines are hopefully extending their life, we'll talk about the next 20 kids names that you can put on the side of those, and we think that's a pretty cool story."