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MidAmerican details its wind-energy expansion plan  

Credit:  By Jim Offner | Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier | wcfcourier.com ~~

DES MOINES | MidAmerican Energy Co. has unveiled additional details about its plan to develop up to 1,050 megawatts of additional wind generation in Iowa by the end of 2015. Construction activity is now underway at each of the five project sites.

The utility recently reached an agreement with Highland Wind Energy LLC for the acquisition of the approximate 500-megawatt Highland wind project site in O’Brien County.

Agreements also were reached with EDF Renewable Energy to bring in the 250-megawatt Lundgren wind project site in Webster County and with two RPM Access LLC companies for the acquisitions of the 138.6-megawatt Wellsburg wind project site in Grundy County and the 117-megawatt Macksburg wind project site in Madison County.

In addition, MidAmerican Energy’s existing Vienna wind farm, constructed in 2012, is being expanded by 44.6 megawatts in Marshall County.

Once complete, the new wind projects, which will consist of 448 wind turbines, will generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of about 317,000 average Iowa households, MidAmerican officials said.

The wind expansion will provide more than $3 million in landowner payments each year and more than $360 million in additional property tax revenues over the next 30 years, the utility said, adding that the expansion will be constructed at no net cost to the company’s customers and will help stabilize electric rates over the long term.

The project will bring about 1,000 construction jobs during the two-year construction period, and about 40 new permanent jobs will be added when the expansion is complete, MidAmerican said.

The utility says it has installed 1,267 wind turbines in Iowa and says when the projects are complete by the end of 2015, about 39 percent of MidAmerican Energy’s generation portfolio will come from wind.

Source:  By Jim Offner | Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier | wcfcourier.com

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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