February 21, 2020

South Carolina company eyeing Boone for wind energy project

By Logan Kahler | Boone News-Republican | Feb 20, 2020 | www.amestrib.com

Apex Clean Energy is working out the kinks with Boone County in a 30-year investment in wind energy called “The Great Pathfinder Wind Project”.

“A wind farm will bring a great stream of tax revenue for the city, the county, for roads and schools,” Max Jabrixio, Public Engagement Manager with Apex Clean Energy said.

Upon completion of this project, Jabrixio said it would produce up to 225 megawatts of total energy in northern Boone.

In order to make a project of this scale to come to fruition, Apex develops proposals to present to landowners to potentially lease land for wind turbines to be constructed in trade for monetary benefits.

All participation in the project is completely voluntary.

Apex has a fairly broad idea of mapped out locations and agreements from landowners for their wind farm, but they’re hoping to move this project forward soon.

“We hope to be submitting a permit application to the city of Boone for their approval showing a detailed map of the location we’re expecting to place facilities,” Jabrixio said.

According to Jabrixio, the Great Pathfinder Wind project will create approximately 200 jobs for Boone County. Of those, 15-20 of them would be full-time operations and maintenance jobs.

The Charleston S.C.-based Apex started 10 years ago with developments in states like Texas and Oklahoma, and has one fully constructed wind farm in northwest Iowa’s Clay County called Upland Prairie.

Upland Prairie was eventually purchased by Alliant Energy.

“That’s typically our business model, we’re a developer and operator, but frequently have a third party financer, like a utility,” Jabrixio said. “Or a corporate partner like Google, Facebook, McDonalds.”

At this point, a financial partner for the Boone project hasn’t been finalized. Once an agreement with the city is made and they’re able to break ground, they will announce who that partner is.

So far, Apex has been working for years gathering lease agreements from landowners, collecting meteorological and environmental data on potential sites.

Jabrixio said he expects to go into the permitting process with the city of Boone this year, receive permits and begin construction in either 2020 or 2021. Construction of a project of this magnitude is estimated to take anywhere from 10 to 15 months based on weather.

URL to article:  https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2020/02/21/south-carolina-company-eyeing-boone-for-wind-energy-project/