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$42M wind farm set for Carroll County

A New Jersey energy company today announced plans for a $42 million Carroll County wind-farm project that will be located on 1,100 acres of rural agricultural land.

The company, NJR Clean Energy Ventures (NJRCEV), the unregulated distributed power subsidiary of New Jersey Resources (NJR), will construct, own and operate the wind farm with a total capacity of 20 megawatts.

The New Jersey company – which announced the plan in a news release this morning – has not released specific details on where the farm will be located in the county. Templeton Mayor Ken Behrens said he has heard a wind-energy development is going up northeast of his community in southern Carroll County. He could not say whether the project was related to the New Jersey company’s plan.

“We haven’t received anything from anybody officially,” Behrens said.

The energy produced at the wind farm, as well as the renewable attributes, will be sold through a 25-year power-purchase agreement with MidAmerican Energy, Iowa’s largest energy company. MidAmerican is owned by Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

“With the Carroll Area wind farm project, NJR Clean Energy Ventures continues to successfully execute its distributed power strategic plan,” said Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO of New Jersey Resources. “As renewable energy becomes an increasingly larger and important part of our nation’s energy future, we will continue to identify investment opportunities that strengthen our distributed power portfolio, reduce our reliance on investment tax credits from solar investments, benefit our company and shareowners and are consistent with our core values of quality service and environmental stewardship.”

NJRCEV agreed to acquire the shovel-ready Carroll Area wind-farm project from OwnEnergy Inc., a developer of midsize and community wind projects. It will be the second wind-farm project purchased from OwnEnergy; the first was the Montana-based Two Dot wind farm in 2013. NJRCEV maintains an approximate 19 percent ownership position in OwnEnergy and holds an option to purchase projects that fit its investment profile.

Additionally, NJRCEV expects the wind farm will qualify for federal-production tax credits, which are based on kilowatt-hour output. All PTCs generated by the Carroll Area wind farm will be retained by NJR.

NJRCEV will engage Mortenson Construction for the engineering, procurement and construction of the project. A leader in renewable energy construction, Mortenson has completed over 124 wind projects, totaling over 13,000 megawatts of clean, renewable energy, since 1995.

NJRCEV expects the wind farm will be operational by spring 2015.