A wind developer plans to build a 150-megawatt wind farm for an estimated cost of $300 million in southeast North Dakota’s Dickey County.
FPL Energy, the nation’s leading wind developer, wants to begin construction on July 1, with completion by December 2009, Scott Scovill, a project director for the firm, said Tuesday.
If approved by regulators, the wind farm would sprawl over 20 square miles of leased private land at a site about 15 miles northwest of Ellendale.
The wind farm would include up to 100 wind turbines, a substation and transmission line, according to a letter of intent filed with the North Dakota Public Service Commission, which must approve the site plan for the project to proceed.
FPL Energy, of Juno, Fla., already operates five wind projects in North Dakota – including a 98.6-megawatt wind farm dedicated Tuesday in Oliver County – for a total of 328.1 megawatts in operation.
By the end of the year, FPL expects to have 517 megawatts of wind capacity in North Dakota, Scovill said.
A tally kept by the PSC shows North Dakota now has 1,672 megawatts of wind capacity that are under development or in service.
Kevin Cramer, a public service commissioner, said Tuesday that the latest FPL project is a sign the wind industry expects the federal wind production tax credit, now set to expire at the end of the year, will get extended by Congress.
The tax credit is a key incentive to spur wind development, and Cramer predicts a flurry of other wind announcements in North Dakota likely will come in the near future, as firms position themselves to take advantage of the extension, which likely would expire in December 2009.
“If that’s the industry expectation you’ll be seeing a rash of announcements in the coming months,” Cramer said.
Patrick Springer, The Forum
25 June 2008
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