With conventional wind turbines in France meeting often vociferous opposition, Mortier's prototype has attracted a good deal of attention. French utility EDF, energy agency ADEME and the regional and local authorities between them met one-third of the EUR 200,000 total cost. They are now planning to convert at least 100 old windmills -- at least one in every département and region in France -- as an example of what is possible. Mortier, who is setting up a company to develop the business, has received enquiries from mill owners throughout Europe. Depending on what subsidies are available, he says the pay back period is about 15 years.
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