Wind Turbine Roadblocks in Recession

By: Tiffany Teasley Email
By: Tiffany Teasley Email

It's a 35,000 square foot $12 million investment in green technology.

"This facility has been open for almost a year and it was built to do green components," said Jeff Metts, President of Dowding Machining.

They're building components like wind turbine parts and platforms, that Gov. Granholm continues to tout, she toured Dowding Industries back in 2007, after it was awarded a state grant to build a new facility.

"It is a very difficult market right now," Metts said.

And that's why the Eaton Rapids manufacturing facility isn't producing the green components they had hoped to.

"There's just no money out there, there's no money to get, you're in a survival mode of your core business being off, so it's a very difficult time from that standpoint," Metts said.

That's because Metts says the demand for green products just isn't a reality in a recession.

"It was very difficult when you know the direction that you're going and all of sudden that direction gets put on hold and you were already into it," Metts said.

So in the meantime they've gone back to what they know, building machinery for construction and agriculture until the market turns around.

"All these machines have work on them and that is what we're trying to do to fill the process until we can move into the wind," Metts said.

While the market for parts like wind turbine components may be slow going now, the company is expecting a resurgence in the green movement in the second half of 2010.

"I think third and fourth quarter of next year, you're going to see wind really start to pick up and I think 2011 it will be back beyond where it was before," Metts said.

And Metts says when the market if back in the black the sky is the limit for going green.

"So that it becomes a competitive market and it withstands the market place," Metts said.

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