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Duke Energy Renewables eyes wind farm near Lake Erie  

Credit:  John Downey, Senior Staff Writer - Charlotte Business Journal, www.bizjournals.com 27 September 2011 ~~

Duke Energy Renewables is proposing a roughly 100-megawatt wind farm about five miles from Lake Erie in the western tip of New York.

The Ball Hill Windpark would be built on about 13,000 acres in the towns of Hanover and Villenova, southwest of Buffalo.

Duke Renewables will not comment on the proposed project. Its policy is not to discuss commercial power projects until a power-purchase agreement is signed. No such agreement has been signed as yet on Ball Hill.

Representatives of Duke Renewables made a presentation on current plans for the project Monday to the town board of Hanover, N.Y., the Dunkirk Observer reports.

Target 2013

The towns set aside land for the wind farm in 2008, initially involving New York-based Noble Energy Inc. But the project has changed hands, and it has been Duke’s project since at least spring.

It is not clear when Duke may be prepared to announce the project. But the Observer reports that the wind farm is expected to come on line in 2013. That would likely put Duke on a schedule to conclude negotiations for a purchase agreement by next fall.

Duke Renewables is the 10th-largest wind-power producer in the United States, with more than 1,000 megawatts of capacity. But it has been active making deals this year and has already announced almost 800 megawatts of capacity to be built by the end of 2012.

Third Eastern project

That would make Duke the fifth-largest wind-power producer in the country.

Many of Duke Renewables’s projects are in Texas and farther west. The Ball Hill project would give Duke at least three wind farms on the East Coast. Duke operates the 70-megawatt North Allegheny Wind Project in southwest Pennsylvania. It is building a 69-megawatt project in northeast Pennsylvania.

Ball Hill would produce enough power for about 30,000 homes. Based on 2010 average construction prices, it would cost about $250 million or less to build, depending on the final size of the project.

Duke Renewables is an unregulated subsidiary of Duke Energy, unrelated to the power company’s utility businesses in the Carolinas and Midwest.

Source:  John Downey, Senior Staff Writer - Charlotte Business Journal, www.bizjournals.com 27 September 2011

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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