MidAmerican Energy Expanding Wind Generation in Iowa

By: WOWT Email
By: WOWT Email

MidAmerican Energy Company is announcing additional details about the largest wind expansion in Iowa’s history.

Earlier this year, the company announced plans to develop up to 1,050 megawatts of additional wind generation in Iowa by the end of 2015.

Construction activity is now underway at each of the five project sites, and MidAmerican Energy is releasing information about the developers, turbine supplier, contractors and project size by location.

MidAmerican Energy recently reached an agreement with Highland Wind Energy, LLC, an Invenergy Wind LLC company, for the acquisition of the approximate 500-megawatt Highland wind project site in O’Brien County. Agreements also were reached with EDF Renewable Energy for the acquisition of the approximate 250-megawatt Lundgren wind project site in Webster County, and with two RPM Access, LLC companies for the acquisitions of the approximate 138.6-megawatt Wellsburg wind project site in Grundy County and the approximate 117-megawatt Macksburg wind project site in Madison County. In addition, MidAmerican Energy’s existing Vienna wind farm, constructed in 2012, is being expanded by 44.6 megawatts in Marshall County (Vienna II wind project).

After the conclusion of a competitive tender process, MidAmerican Energy has selected Siemens Energy as the turbine supplier for all project sites.

Once complete, the new wind projects, which will consist of 448 wind turbines, will generate enough electricity to power the equivalent of approximately 317,000 average Iowa households.

The wind expansion will provide more than $3 million in landowner payments each year and more than $360 million in additional property tax revenues over the next 30 years. The expansion will be constructed at no net cost to the company’s customers and will help stabilize electric rates over the long term. Approximately 1,000 construction jobs will be added to Iowa’s economy during the two-year construction period, and approximately 40 new permanent jobs will be added when the expansion is complete.

On May 8, MidAmerican Energy announced plans to expand its wind generation fleet in Iowa. On Aug. 9, the Iowa Utilities Board approved an agreement between MidAmerican Energy and the Office of Consumer Advocate granting state approval to proceed with the wind generation expansion.

The company began building wind projects in 2004 and, to date, has installed 1,267 wind turbines in Iowa, making MidAmerican Energy the No. 1 rate-regulated utility owner of wind generation in the U.S. When the projects are complete by year-end 2015, approximately 39 percent of MidAmerican Energy’s generation portfolio will come from wind resources associated with its 1,715 wind turbines, further strengthening the company’s top ranking.

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