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June 6, 2024

Avangrid partners with Yale startup testing a process to recycle wind turbine blades


Orange-based energy company Avangrid is working with a Yale University-student led startup that is developing a process to recycle wind turbine blades.

Avangrid announced Wednesday that it has donated 300 pounds of decommissioned wind turbine blades to WindLoop, which is testing a process that allows 90% of turbine blade material to be recovered.

Wind blade materials include glass fiber and epoxy resin, which are difficult to recycle.

“Currently, there is no large-scale industrial process for recycling wind turbine blades, and companies are facing increasing pressure to find recycling facilities that offer circular recycling solutions,” said Shubh Jain, CEO and co-founder of WindLoop. “WindLoop seeks to bridge this gap.”

Avangrid donated the blades, which were decommissioned, from its wind farm in Kenedy County, Texas.

Finding a solution to recycling turbine components will become increasingly important, as wind turbines need to have their parts replaced every 10 to 15 years, according to Avangrid.

Windloop’s goal – to create “a circulator economy for the wind industry” – is consistent with its commitment to sustainability. Avangrid plans to recycle 100% of its decommissioned wind turbine blades by 2030.

“Avangrid is one of America’s most innovative leaders in renewable energy, and this is yet another example of our forward-thinking approach to accelerating a clean energy transition across the United States,” said Avangrid CEO Pedro Azagra. “We recognize the great challenges in front of us, and we are helping lay the groundwork to find new and efficient methods to recycle blades that will improve the circularity of our industry.”

WindLoop’s team consists of four students at Yale School of the Environment. The startup is part of ClimateHaven, a New Haven-based climate tech incubator.

Avangrid, an affiliate of the Spanish energy company, Iberdrola Group, owns the Connecticut power utility United Illuminating Co. 

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