Fairfield, N.Y. – An official with the Hardscrabble wind farm project said testing of the 37 wind turbines has begun.
“They are all standing, but they haven’t reached commercial operation yet,” Paul Copleman, a spokesperson for Iberdola Renewables, said in a telephone interview Monday.
He said he anticipates a commercial operation start date to be sometime in February.
“People may already be seeing all of them turning. That’s still part of the commissioning and testing process which we do at the tail end of construction,” said Copleman.
The Hardscrabble wind farm project is the work of Atlantic Wind, a subsidiary of Iberdola Renewables. After five years of legal negotiations and getting approval from town, school and county boards, the project began the construction phase last summer.
The 37 2-megawatt wind turbines are now connected to the power grid and they stretch across the Herkimer County landscape – 25 in the town of Fairfield and 12 in the town of Norway.
The project also includes 14 miles of gravel access road, 20 miles of buried electrical lines, an interconnection facility in the town of Little Falls, two permanent 77-meter tall meteorological towers and an operations and maintenance facility.
The revenue-sharing agreement includes an annual per megawatt payment of $8,000, with a cost of living adjustment for the payments, with a floor of a 2.5 percent and a ceiling of five percent, and a $400,000 payment that was made to the county within 60 days of the start of construction.
The project sands to be awarded state subsidies after energy production begins.
The project temporarily employed about 200 people in the area for field work through a Minnesota firm. About 12 people will be employed regularly for maintenance once the project is completed.
In November, Iberdola Renewables halted construction temporarily because the concrete foundations did not meet company standards. Copleman said the foundations have since been modified and engineered to retrofit the concrete foundation. He said the 15 foundations that needed modification now “meet and exceed strength criteria.”
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