In a bill that averts the so-called “fiscal cliff,” Congress passed an extension of the wind energy tax credits. Known as the PTC, its extension had been in question for much of the year which hobbled wind-project proposals across the United States. The extension will help new projects rise in 2013, but questions remain about what happens after that. In any case, here’s what’s happening now:
Between a river and a hard place
The remote 24.6-MW Eva Creek Wind Farm made it by just six inches. That was the space between the REpower MM92 turbine components traveling on a railroad car and the overhead beams on a bridge crossing the Nenana River.
Finally, the Lake Region State College has met numerous regulatory challenges and its 1.6-MW turbine is running. In the works since 2003, the turbine is a working classroom for students in the college’s wind energy program. The college has North Dakota’s only wind energy technician program.
Powering homes and local businesses
Wind Capital Group’s 201-MW Post Rock project is now selling electricity to Westar Energy under a long-term power purchase agreement. The farm, which uses 134 of GE’s 1.5-MW turbines, created 150 jobs and attracted about $1.5 million in economic activity for local businesses during construction.
It really adds up
MidAmerican Wind, a subsidiary of Warren Buffett-owned MidAmerican Renewables, has completed installation of the 300-MW Pinyon Pines I and II projects. The facility consists of 100 Vestas 3-MW turbines. MidAmerican Renewables now owns more than 1.25 GW of wind capacity.
In the last moments of 2012
A four-turbine project on Georgia Mountain is now connected to the grid, just in time. The project had a Dec. 31 deadline to be eligible for a 30% federal incentive. Electricity from the $28 million, 10-MW project is sold to the city utility.
A harmonious beginning
WKN USA opened Project Mozart, a 30-MW development that is the first phase of a larger 250-MW project. Mozart, which consists of 12 Nordex N100 2.5-MW turbines, connects to the local grid and is expected to deliver energy for more than 6,000 households annually.
More money, more projects
Duke Energy Corp. received two $110 million loans for the North American Development Bank to build a duo of farms. The 200-MW Los Vientos I project will use 87 Siemens AG wind turbines. The 202-MW Los Vientos II project in nearby Cameron County will use 84 Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. turbines.
All at once
The 66,000-acre Flat Ridge 2 wind project, which spans four counties, is now creating enough electricity to power 160,000 homes. Made up of 274, 1.6-MW turbines, the $800 million farm is the largest ever in Kansas to be built at once, rather than in phases.
Filed Under: Projects