Earlier this spring I visited David Kolsrud and his team at DAK Renewable Energy in South Dakota. DAK has a portfolio of ethanol, biodeisel and wind investments with the common theme being community ownership. We visited Agri-Energy, an ethanol mill that is owned by 230 local farmers and produces 22 million gallons of ethanol as well as distillers grain (fed to livestock) and biomass pellets that are burned in place of some of the coal at a power plant in the region.
For a decade and a half they have been pioneers in community ownership structured renewable energy development in the mid-west and are seeking to continue their leadership by investing in, and deploying more sustainable, integrated technologies and practices. While I was there we visited Mark Willers of Minwind in Minnesota and toured their fully community owned windfarm.