NorthWestern Energy is asking the Montana Public Service Commission for approval to purchase and operate the yet-to-be-developed Spion Kop Wind Project in Judith Basin County.
NorthWestern announced its intent to purchase the 40-megawatt project in April. If approved, the $86.1 million project would be developed by Compass Wind and be placed into the utility rate base for NorthWestern’s Montana electric retail customers.
The energy and associated renewable energy credits will be used to meet the renewable portfolio standards obligations in Montana law.
“The project helps NorthWestern maintain a balanced, environmentally responsible portfolio of generation resources that enhances rate stability for customers over the long term, and positively contributes to the economic base of Judith Basin County and Montana,” John Hines, NorthWestern’s vice president of supply, said in a news release.
If the PSC fails to grant approval for the project by April 1, then either party may terminate the agreement. Construction of the project will begin if a favorable ruling is made, with commercial operation projected to begin by the end of 2012.
The project site is located south of the Highwood Mountains, north of Geyser in Judith Basin County at Spion Kop, an early settlement marked by a 6-mile long rocky ridge.
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