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Montana wind energy project paused  

Credit:  MTN News | August 27, 2018 | ktvh.com ~~

HELENA – A developer is proposing a 320-megawatt wind energy project in south-central Montana.

This comes with battery storage for the power it produces, but the project is on hold due to an impasse in negotiations over rates with NorthWestern Energy.

The Beaver Creek project would include four, 80-megawatt wind farms north of Columbus. They will have battery storage that enables the project to provide a steady flow of power.

Developers say it would create 350 jobs during construction as well as $4 million a year in property taxes to Sweet Grass and Stillwater counties. But Beaver Creek owners claim NorthWestern Energy is not negotiating in good faith over the rates it would pay for that power.

The developer is now asking the Montana Public Service Commission to settle the issue. PSC spokesman Bowen Gowen says the commission will hold a hearing, take evidence and then issues a ruling.

“It’s already a settled matter under federal law that the utility will have to buy that power. The question is, how much. One of the things that makes this an interesting facility, technically speaking, Beaver Creek isn’t one qualifying facility, it’s four,” Gowen said.

“They actually have 300 and some megawatts, and it’s broken into four facilities, to put it under the 80 megawatts. So I’m sure that that will probably be involved in the hearing at some point.”

NorthWestern Energy says that it will answer Beaver Creek’s claims in a written filing with the PSC.

Source:  MTN News | August 27, 2018 | ktvh.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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