Iowa business to open facility in Fairfax to recycle wind turbine blades

Wind turbines
Wind turbines(KFYR)
Published: Jan. 12, 2023 at 10:21 AM CST
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FAIRFAX, Iowa (KCRG) - New Iowa business, REGEN Fiber, is opening a new facility in Fairfax where it plans to recycle wind turbine blades, so they don’t end up in landfills.

The company, owned by Travero, said it has created a patent-pending process, that was tested at its Des Moines facility, to convert the decommissioned wind turbine blades into reusable materials for use in the concrete and mortar industries.

The company also said its process is an environmentally friendly way to dispose of the turbine blades that doesn’t involve releasing combustion byproducts into the atmosphere.

The material is described as a reinforcement fiber that contributes to the strength and durability of things like pavement, precast products and slabs-on-grade.

The director of business development at Travero Jeff Woods said they’re entering the market at just the right time, as an increasing number of turbines in the growing wind industry are reaching the end of their lifespan.

“Recycling blades without using heat or chemicals while simultaneously keeping them out of landfills or being burned supports the sustainability goals of both the wind industry and customers receiving the recycled products,” Wood said in a press release.

REGEN Fiber’s new manufacturing facility in Fairfax is being constructed in a section of Alliant Energy’s Big Cedar Industrial Center, next to Travero’s Logistics Park Cedar Rapids.

The facility is expected to open in the second half of this year, so large, commercial-scale operations can commence.

The company said the new facility is expected to be able to recycle more than 30,000 tons of shredded turbine blade materials per year.