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Wind Power News: Montana


These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They are the products of the organizations or individuals noted and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch.

May 8, 2018 • Letters, MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Restrict blight of wind farms

We don’t need the blight of wind farms in Montana. Our largest industry is tourism because of Montana’s beauty. Drive across Minnesota and Kansas and you will agree about the blight. Physical footprint of about 12 acres per megawatt produced by coal, gas and nuclear. Solar and wind are much more land intensive using 46.5 and 70.6 acres per megawatt produced. As of 2015 wind turbines accounted for only 4.7 percent of total electricity demand. Each turbine has a lifespan . . . Complete story »

March 18, 2018 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Minnesota company to build 30-turbine wind farm in central Montana

A proposed central Montana wind farm will provide power to NorthWestern Energy under a contract announced this week. Minnesota-based Allete Clean Energy announced it will build the 80-megawatt South Peak wind farm near Great Falls and deliver power to NorthWestern Energy for 15 years under a power purchase agreement. It’s enough power to electrify about 26,000 homes. The project will be located next to Spion Kop, a 40-megawatt wind farm owned by NorthWestern near Geyser. Allete (pronounced A-leet) will use . . . Complete story »

March 5, 2018 • Montana, Oregon, WashingtonPrint storyE-mail story

Winds of change: What will power the Northwest’s future?

MARTINSDALE, Mont. – Carl Borgquist wants to spend more than $1 billion to transform a remote butte fringed by pine trees into a giant water battery. This might seem a madman’s folly if not for the roller-coaster nature of wind and solar power production, which can soar when few need electricity, then fade in the evenings when people come home to turn on the lights. When demand is low, Borquist would store energy in the form of water pumped from a . . . Complete story »

February 13, 2018 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

$2M loan will help pay for a single Two Dot Wind turbine going up in Broadview

Construction of single wind turbine is expected in Broadview later this spring. Two Dot Wind will build a single wind turbine capable of electrifying 487 homes. The company secured a $1.9 million loan Feb. 5 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Energy for America Program. Two Dot Wind will contribute $1.2 million to the project. The Company will sell its power to NorthWestern Energy. Wind developer Dave Healow said work on the site could begin this spring. The turbine . . . Complete story »

December 14, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Developer scraps Montana wind farm over power price

A Calgary-based energy company said Wednesday it won’t build a 21-megawatt wind farm in Montana because it won’t be paid enough for the power it generates. The Public Service Commission approved a price of $23.30 per megawatt hour. TransAlta wanted $43.63 per megawatt hour for the power; Northwestern Energy, which would have purchased it, proposed paying $13.96. The price discrepancy had gone to the PSC for mediation. Stacey Hatcher, TransAlta communications manager, said Wednesday the company can’t accept the terms . . . Complete story »

December 14, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Montana wind farm may not happen under ‘extremely difficult’ terms, developer says

Canadian renewable energy giant TransAlta says it cannot develop a wind project near Harlowton under terms set this week by Montana’s Public Service Commission. The developer’s comments come one day after the PSC announced the New Colony Wind Project was “one step closer to breaking ground after receiving the go-ahead from state regulators.” “These terms would make it extremely difficult, if not impossible, for any new QF projects to be constructed in the State of Montana,” said Stacy Hatch, spokesperson . . . Complete story »

December 14, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

NaturEner USA formally protests its tax bill, again

NaturEner USA has formally protested 2017 centrally assessed taxes for its three wind farms in Glacier and Toole counties, according to the Montana Department of Revenue. Currently, NaturEner is appealing their centrally assessed taxes for 2015 and 2016 for its Glacier Wind Energy 1, Glacier Wind Energy 2 and Rim Rock Wind Energy facilities. At the heart of the protests is a disagreement between NaturEner USA and the Montana Department of Revenue (MDOR) over the valuation and possible deduction of . . . Complete story »

November 10, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Montana now makes wind farms put up bonds to ensure towers are taken down

New rules will require big wind farm owners to post bonds with the state of Montana to ensure decommissioning including the removal of giant towers. Draft decommissioning rules were published Thursday by the state Department of Environmental Quality detailing the process and requirements. Public comment is being accepted. “It’s the old story, they’re great now but 15 years from now maybe there’s going to be a whole change in who owns the things,” said Rep. Jim Keane, D-Butte. Keane was . . . Complete story »

November 10, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Wind farm picks up speed

In the near future, tall, sleek wind turbines will become a part of the landscape of western Stillwater County. Those turbines are expected to bring in about $18 million of taxes into the county. Michael Thompson, the project developer, visited Columbus Tuesday to give a presentation to the public about the Stillwater Wind project prior to a public hearing. The project began in 2001 and was acquired in July by Stillwater Wind LLC, owned by Pattern Energy. Pattern is based . . . Complete story »

October 14, 2017 • MontanaPrint storyE-mail story

Wind developer sues PSC, NorthWestern over pricing

A wind farm developer is suing the Montana Public Service Commission and NorthWestern Energy, alleging discriminatory pricing for small renewable energy developers, a charge they denied. Martin Wilde developed two wind projects near Fairfield and sold the power to NorthWestern, and is planning additional wind farms as well. The PSC regulates public utilities including rates. Wilde argues in a civil lawsuit filed Tuesday in state district court in Great Falls that Montana’s renewable energy industry has come under attack from . . . Complete story »

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