EDF Renewable Energy says the 184 megawatt (MW) Kelly Creek Wind Project in Illinois reached commercial operation. The Project, 60 miles southwest of Chicago in Ford and Kankakee counties, is comprised of 92 Vestas V100 wind turbines. Its power production is equivalent to avoiding more than 474,000 metric tons of CO₂ emissions annually, which represents the greenhouse gas emissions from 100,000 passenger vehicles driven over the course of one year. The Project will sell electricity into the PJM wholesale market on a merchant basis.
“EDF Renewable Energy is pleased to announce commercial operation of the Kelly Creek Wind Project, which is now supplying cost-competitive, fixed-priced, clean energy to the PJM Energy Market,” said Ryan Pfaff, Executive Vice President for Development at EDF RE. “EDF RE is also proud of Kelly Creek’s positive economic impact, generated through the use of wind turbine towers, blades and nacelles manufactured at Vestas’ Colorado facilities, the creation of approximately 100 construction jobs and 10 long-term, full-time operations jobs, long-term lease payments to landowners, and recurring tax payments to local municipalities.”
According to the American Wind Energy Association, wind-supported jobs grew by 20% in 2015 alone. There are now 88,000 overall positions spread across all 50 states, and 380,000 jobs predicted by 2030. Wind energy not only offers rural America a weather-resistant cash crop but wind power is cost-competitive with all other sources of electricity in many areas of the country, saving consumers money on their electric bills and hedging against rising prices for fuel.
EDF Renewable Services, a provider of renewable operations and maintenance services in North America, will provide balance-of-plant operations and maintenance for the facility including 24/7 remote monitoring from its NERC compliant Operations Control Center.