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Utility to reconsider wind farm investment after PSC decision  

Alliant Energy Corp. said Wednesday that it will reconsider its plan to develop a wind farm in Fond du Lac County after state regulators authorized a rate of return on the development that’s less than what the utility was seeking.

Alliant’s Madison utility, Wisconsin Power & Light Co., received an oral decision from the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin Tuesday on the utility’s application that would set financial parameters for the wind farm. In its oral decision, the PSC proposed an authorized return on common equity rate of 10.5 percent, the utility said in a press release Wednesday. The utility’s application requested a return on equity of 12.9 percent.

“We are disappointed in the terms of the (PSC’s) decision … and we believe that the decision today is contrary to the intention of Wisconsin Act 7 to encourage investment in new generation, including renewable energy,” said William Harvey, chairman, president and CEO of Alliant Energy. “WP&L will review the final order and communicate whether or not it intends to make the investment in accordance with the terms and conditions of the (PSC’s) Act 7 decision.”

Wisconsin Power & Light is proposing a 60- to 99-megawatt wind farm project in Fond du Lac County called the Cedar Ridge Wind Farm.

It is the first generating facility application in Wisconsin filed in accordance with the provisions of the 2005 Wisconsin Act 7, which the utility claims allows Wisconsin utilities to request that the PSC establish, in advance, the principal financial terms and conditions that will apply “irrevocably” to a new electric generating facility. The law is designed to provide a degree of certainty to the utility, investors, and ratepayers with respect to future recovery of the facility’s costs.

The PSC’s decision on Wisconsin Power’s certificate of authority application to construct Cedar Ridge Wind Farm is expected in May, Alliant said.

Alliant Energy (NYSE: LNT) is a Madison-based energy-services provider with subsidiaries serving approximately 1 million electric and more than 400,000 natural gas customers.

The Business Journal of Milwaukee

milwaukee.bizjournals.com

25 April 2007

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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