LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW) – Gundersen Lutheran and Organic Valley celebrated the completion of the Cashton Greens Wind Farm Wednesday. The 10 million dollar project constructed two wind turbines that produce enough energy to power 1000 homes for an entire year.
The energy created by the turbines will go to the Cashton area to power homes and businesses. Gundersen Lutheran and Organic Valley will be paid for that energy, helping to offset their own energy costs.
Fostering strong, sustainable communities is also a core belief of Organic Valley, but that wasn't the only reason they signed on to the project. Organic Valley CEO, George Siemon says this isn't just good for the environment, it's also good business. "When you run a farmer business you're always having a lot of unknowns. Like the drought this year. And so when you can lock in costs, and make a difference, that's one of the things we can do as a strategy."
The Cashton wind project is also part of Gundersen Lutheran's environmental stewardship program. Under this initiative, Gundersen seeks to become 100% energy independent while creating healthier communities. Gundersen's CEO, Jeff Thompson, says this project will decrease stress on the environment, and help them reach their stewardship goal. "Provide a smart business approach to more environmentally sound behaviors, and partnership with multiple people in our community so we can get there faster." Thompson says eventually the money generated from these endeavors will allow them to offer health care at lower costs.
Both organizations hope the success in their partnership will be a benefit to the community and will encourage others to do the same.
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