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Alliant utility proposes to build Minnesota wind farm  

Wisconsin Power and Light Co. said Monday that it is seeking permission to build an up to 400-megawatt wind farm in Freeborn County in southern Minnesota.

In April, Wisconsin Power, a Madison utility of Alliant Energy Corp. (NYSE: LNT), executed a letter of intent to purchase the Bent Tree Wind Farm site for an undisclosed sum from Wind Capital Group LLC, a St. Louis-based developer of wind energy assets. The site has the potential to produce up to 400 megawatts of energy if completely developed, enough potential capacity to power up to 100,000 homes, the company said in a statement.

Wisconsin Power and Light (WPL) expects the site purchase to be completed by the end of 2008. WPL is proposing to build the first 200 megawatts for commercial operation by the end of 2010. The utility said it has filed both a site permit application and Certificate of Need application with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission for the project. Developing the first 200 megawatts is expected to cost about $450 million to $475 million, excluding allowance for funds used during construction.

A decision regarding development of the wind farm’s additional 200 megawatts has not yet been made, the company said.

WPL is constructing the Cedar Ridge Wind Farm, its first fully-owned and operated wind farm. The 68-megawatt wind farm in the townships of Eden and Empire in Fond du Lac County is expected to begin commercial operation by the end of 2008.

Madison-based Alliant Energy (NYSE: LNT) has subsidiaries serving about 1 million electric and 400,000 natural gas customers.

The Business Journal of Milwaukee

Monday, June 30, 2008


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