ENID, Okla. – Plans for a wind farm near Breckinridge continue to proceed under new ownership.
Garfield County commissioners learned Monday that NextEra Energy Resources recently purchased the Breckinridge wind farm from TradeWind Energy.
“We look forward to being here, it’s very exciting. We don’t have any projects in this county, or really in this part of the state. This is a new territory for us and we’re really excited to be here,” said Krista Hendricks, NextEra Energy Resources project manager.
The nearly 100 megawatt Breckinridge facility is located on approximately 10,000 acres. NextEra Energy Resources is planning to install 57 GE 1.7 megawatt turbine machines by the end of November 2015, she said.
Investment in the wind farm will be more than $100 million, Hendricks said.
She said the company expects to go back before commissioners with a road use agreement and any needed permit requests, around the beginning of 2015.
Currently, environmental studies are under way, she said.
“There are no fatal flaws at this point, that we’re aware of, that would impede construction or the location of the project,” Hendricks said.
There will be engineering, fieldwork, surveys and oil and gas discovery work at the site over the coming months, she said.
“A lot of the turbine locations have been identified but we’ll go out there (to) verify that we can actually install those turbines in those locations. So, there may be some movements in those locations. It’s yet to be seen. They may or they may not move, we’re not sure yet,” Hendricks said.
The foundations for 11 turbines already have been completed, in order to meet Internal Revenue Service requirements for production tax credits, she said.
“The unique thing I want to say about NextEra really is, you know, NextEra develops wind farms, constructs wind farms and operates. We don’t sell our assets; rarely do we do that. So, we’re here for the long term,” she said. “When construction is done, we do not leave. We still have a presence here and look forward to a partnership with Garfield County.”
According to Hendricks, there is a fairly aggressive timeline for completion of the wind farm.
“November is our target,” she said. “As long at OG&E stays on track with the point of renter connection, we can actually interconnect to the grid.”
She explained that OG&E owns the substation, into which the power will flow and be disbursed into the grid.
NextEra Energy Resources has a 20-year power purchase agreement with Grand River Dam Authority, Hendricks said.
During construction, there will be 100 to 200 temporary employees. There will be between seven and 11 permanent positions, post-construction, she said.
Based in Juno Beach, Fla., NextEra Energy Resources is a Fortune 200 company with wind assets in 24 states and Canada and more than 4.7 million customers, Hendricks said.
The company owns Florida Power and Light, which Hendricks said is one of the largest utilities in the country.
NextEra Energy Resources has more than 10,000 megawatts of wind in the U.S. and Canada, nearly 10,000 wind turbines and maintains roughly 100 wind farm sites.
“What’s unique to NextEra is that we can operate our turbines from Florida,” she said, adding that there are operations buildings at each wind farm site.
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