The Feasibility of Wind Power for Bridgestone Nature Reserve at Chestnut Mountain


  • Isabella Kinsey
  • Grace Cooke
  • Evan Langley
  • Spencer Brantley


This project involved researching the feasibility of bringing wind power to The Nature Conservancy's Bridgestone Nature Reserve at Chestnut Mountain. The Nature Conservancy tasked us with finding a renewable source of energy for their property to lower their carbon footprint. Wind energy has many benefits, such as being renewable and producing much fewer carbon emissions than fossil fuel energy. However, Sparta, TN has much lower wind speeds than areas that effectively utilize wind power. Wind is also intermittent and may not align with demand. Wind turbines require regular maintenance, and any failure has the potential to destroy the turbine system. The small amount of electricity produced by the turbine would not offset the high installation and maintenance costs. At Sparta's average wind speed of 4.7 mph, a small wind electric system could have a potential payback period of over thirty years. Additionally, we identified two endangered bat species on the property that may be negatively impacted by a wind turbine. There is currently no system in place to easily recycle turbine parts at the end of their lives, and most of them end up in landfills. Ultimately, we decided that wind power would not be the best solution at this time.






Environmental Studies