Mortenson Gets The Nod For MidAmerica’s Beaver Creek
Mortenson Construction has been selected to build the 170 MW Beaver Creek wind farm in Iowa for MidAmerican Energy Co.
The project represents Mortenson’s 13th wind farm for the utility. Beaver Creek, being constructed across Greene and Boone counties near the town of Grand Junction, will have 85 V110 turbines from Vestas. The turbines are expected to be in service in December.
The Beaver Creek wind farm is part of MidAmerican Energy’s Wind XI expansion, which is adding 2 GW of wind generation capacity in Iowa. The Beaver Creek wind farm is also expected to create 150 temporary construction jobs, Mortenson says.
Mortenson, which says it has built 55% of all the wind power in Iowa, will now be a part of the largest economic development investment in the state’s history, the company notes.
“We are pleased to be part of Iowa’s leadership in wind energy. It was in Iowa where we entered the wind energy market in 1995 by erecting our first turbine near Adair,” says Tim Maag, vice president and general manager of Mortenson’s wind energy group.
Acciona Building 424 MW Mexico Wind Project
Acciona has been commissioned by Mexican energy company Zuma Energia to build a 424 MW wind farm in Reynosa, located in the state of Tamaulipas in northeastern Mexico.
According to Acciona, the project, worth approximately $600 million, is part of the capacity awarded in Mexico’s second long-term electricity auction, held by the government’s Secretariat of Energy and National Energy Control Centre this month. In the auction, Zuma Energia was awarded a total of 725 MW of renewable energy capacity, 424 MW of which will be covered with the Reynosa wind farm.
Acciona will build the foundations for 123 wind generators, each with a capacity of 3.45 MW to 3.6 MW, on 120-meter towers, as well as roads and accesses. It will also install the medium-voltage (34.5 kV) network for the entire wind farm, the 400 kV high-voltage network with three substations (two step-up transformers and one for interconnection), and 40 kilometers of double-circuit lines.
“This is a major achievement for Zuma: In just three years, it has established a pipeline of 800 MW, secured funding for its largest project and positioned itself as the leading Mexican company in the country’s renewable energy industry,” says Adrián Katzew, CEO of Zuma Energia. “This is also solid evidence of the transformation of Mexico’s energy industry, where renewable energy is growing in importance in both economic and environmental terms.”
Kansas Wind Farm To Power 150 Target Stores
Target has signed a power purchase agreement for Infinity Renewables’ Solomon Forks Wind Project, located in northwestern Kansas.
Target will buy 100 MW of energy from the 474 MW project to offset 100% of the power the company uses at 150 stores throughout the region. Solomon Forks represents Target’s second wind energy agreement.
The wind farm, which is expected to begin commercial operations in the fourth quarter of 2018, is located across 50,000 acres of land near the city of Colby. Construction is slated to commence in early 2018.
“We are excited to work with Target on the Solomon Forks project,” says Matt Langley, Infinity’s vice president of origination and finance. “Target has shown great leadership in driving the development of low-cost, clean energy development in the United States, and Infinity is pleased to be participating in that mission.”
Goldwind Americas Signs Distributed Wind Order
Goldwind Americas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co. Ltd. (Goldwind), has signed agreements to supply Findlay, Ohio-based One Energy Enterprises LLC with 60 MW of wind turbines.
The turbines will be supplied for various distributed generation wind projects as part of One Energy’s Wind for Industry model. The company says its Wind for Industry model is designed to reduce an industrial facility’s electrical consumption from the grid, as well as provide manufacturers with 20 years of electricity-rate certainty, by installing one or more utility-scale wind turbines and interconnecting them on the facility’s side of its utility meter.
As part of the framework agreement, a firm order of 20 GW 87/1500 turbines is scheduled for immediate delivery. The financing for One Energy’s projects is being provided by Prudential Capital Group as part of a combined senior and subordinated debt facility. The first four turbines will supply wind to Whirlpool Corp. facilities in Marion and Ottawa, Ohio.
One Energy plans to start stocking turbines at its yard in the U.S. in order to shorten the project delivery time for Wind for Industry projects. This turbine agreement was designed to create a framework in which One Energy can work toward delivering wind projects in 90 days.
“We are delighted to be working with One Energy and Prudential Capital in directly powering industrial facilities for some of the largest companies in the United States,” says David Halligan, CEO of Goldwind Americas.
Alliant Seeking Approval For 500 MW Expansion
Alliant Energy’s Iowa utility subsidiary is seeking approval from the Iowa Utilities Board to add up to 500 MW of wind energy in Iowa.
The company received approval in 2016 for a similar expansion. The combined projects would represent a $1.8 billion investment and add up to 1 GW of new wind generation in Iowa – enough to power up to 430,000 Iowa homes a year.
“The customers and communities we serve will benefit from this cost-effective clean energy,” states Doug Kopp, president of Alliant Energy’s Iowa energy company. “Our wind projects will help keep energy costs stable over the long term for customers.”
“Iowa has seen tremendous benefits from the expansion of the wind energy industry in our state,” says Bill Northey, Iowa’s secretary of agriculture. “We appreciate Alliant Energy continuing to invest in wind and other renewable energy sources to power our state.”
The company expects the board to make its decision in early 2018.
Vestas Selected For Cactus Flats
Vestas has received a firm and unconditional order from Southern Power, a subsidiary of Southern Co., for the Cactus Flats wind farm in Texas.
The 148 MW order comprises supply and commissioning of 43 V126-3.45 MW turbines and a 20-year service contract designed to maximize uptime and energy production. Delivery and commissioning are planned for 2017 and 2018, respectively.
“We are pleased to be part of Southern Power’s growing wind portfolio,” says Chris Brown, president of Vestas’ sales and service division in the U.S. and Canada. “This order further expands our 4 MW footprint in North America, reaffirming both the versatility and proven ability of our platforms to deliver low-cost, reliable wind energy.”
The Cactus Flats project was recently sold to Southern Power from Renewable Energy Systems.
Austin Utility Signs PPA With Avangrid
Avangrid Renewables, the U.S. subsidiary of Iberdrola, has signed a long-term wind power purchase agreement (PPA) with Texas utility Austin Energy.
A Texas wind farm to be built between 2018 and 2019 will generate clean energy for the city of Austin over the next 15 years.
Iberdrola, which will own and operate the wind project, says Austin is the 14th most populated U.S. city. Austin Energy, serving more than 448,000 customer accounts and more than 1 million residents in Greater Austin, was named one of the American Wind Energy Association’s top utility wind energy providers of 2015.
The location of the wind farm, which will have a 200 MW capacity and require an investment of nearly $300 million, will be chosen over the next few weeks, says Iberdrola.
Siemens Gamesa Notches Mexican Wind Deal
Siemens Gamesa has inked a Mexican wind turbine order totaling 76 MW from independent developer Fuerza y Energia Limpia de Tizimin.
Over the course of this year, the firm will be installing 36 G114-2.1 MW turbines at the Tizimin wind farm, being developed in the state of Yucatán. Commissioning is scheduled for 2018.
The agreement also encompasses the operations and maintenance of the turbines for five years. The deal represents the first between the two companies in Mexico; they’ve already fulfilled a 100 MW order in Uruguay.
Siemens Gamesa will use a new technique for the foundations, namely braces (a concrete base akin to a plinth). The solution, deployable when a wind farm meets certain conditions, increases the turbines’ output by increasing the height of the hub by up to five meters. This, in turn, brings down the facility’s overall cost of energy and delivers design flexibility in terms of tailoring the blueprints for the terrain, the company says.
Vestas Announces Texas Wind Order With Alterra
Vestas has received an order from Flat Top Wind I LLC, an indirect subsidiary of Alterra Power Corp., for the 200 MW Flat Top wind project in central Texas.
The order, the company’s first with Vestas in the U.S., includes supply and commissioning of the turbines, as well as a 10-year Active Output Management 5000 service agreement, a full-scope service package designed to maximize uptime and energy production.
Delivery of the 100 V110-2.0 MW turbines is expected to begin in the fourth quarter of this year, and commissioning is planned for the first quarter of 2018. Turbine components will be manufactured at Vestas’ Colorado factories.
“With Flat Top Wind I LLC’s order and the transaction above, we are honored to partner with Alterra Power Corp. on our inaugural U.S. project together,” states Chris Brown, president of Vestas’ sales and service division in the U.S. and Canada. “Over the course of its lifetime, a single turbine creates 30 jobs, and with the Flat Top project, we will once more demonstrate the economic benefits that wind energy delivers to both the local and state communities.”
Alterra announced that it had completed financing and partnerships for the Flat Top project.
DONG Sells Half Of Borkum Riffgrund 2
Global Infrastructure Partners III (GIP III) has entered into an agreement to acquire a 50% stake in the Borkum Riffgrund 2 Offshore Wind Farm from DONG Energy for a total consideration of approximately EUR 1.17 billion.
Borkum Riffgrund 2, currently being constructed by DONG Energy, is a 450 MW offshore wind project in the German North Sea. DONG Energy is providing a full-scope engineering, procurement and construction contract; operations and maintenance services; and a route to market for the power production.
The transaction, subject to approval by the competition authorities, is expected to be completed before year-end. To be fully commissioned in 2019, the wind farm will consist of 56 MHI Vestas V164-8.0 MW wind turbines, capable of powering more than 460,000 German households annually.
Following GIP’s acquisition of a 50% stake in the Gode Wind 1 Offshore Wind Farm in 2015 and its inauguration in June 2017, the Borkum Riffgrund 2 transaction is the second joint venture between DONG Energy and GIP.
Quanta Services Inks Largest-Ever Contract
Houston-based Quanta Services Inc. has been selected by American Electric Power (AEP) to provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) solutions for the Wind Catcher Generation Tie Line, which will be part of Invenergy’s planned 2 GW Wind Catcher wind farm in the Oklahoma Panhandle.
The anticipated contract value for the project makes it the largest in Quanta’s history, the company says. The Wind Catcher Tie Line consists of approximately 350 miles of a single-circuit, 765 kV power line located between Guymon and Tulsa, Okla., and two new substations.
Quanta, providing turnkey EPC services for the entire project, estimates that up to 1,000 people could be working on the project in Oklahoma, supported by technical and engineering operations in Texas. Once completed, the Wind Catcher Tie Line would deliver energy from the Wind Catcher wind farm in western Oklahoma to customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.
“We are pleased to provide an innovative solution to a long-standing customer and partner,” says Duke Austin, Quanta’s president and CEO.
Quanta expects construction to begin in late 2018 and to be completed in late 2020. The project is subject to AEP’s obtaining state and federal regulatory approvals.
Cummins Signs PPA For Indiana Wind
Columbus, Ind.-based Cummins Inc., a provider of diesel and natural gas engines and related technologies, has entered into a virtual power purchase agreement (PPA) with EDP Renewables North America to expand a wind farm in northern Indiana. The agreement is another step for Cummins as it works to reduce greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions.
The expansion will add 75 MW – enough to power approximately 20,000 average Indiana homes – to the existing 600 MW capacity at the Meadow Lake Wind Farm. When fully operational, the wind farm expansion will generate renewable electricity equivalent to the amount Cummins uses at its Indiana facilities, the company says. The PPA provides a hedge against rising energy prices, and the company will receive renewable energy certificates to ensure GHG reductions.
Cummins, a Fortune 500 company, says it has been actively pursuing energy efficiency and GHG reduction in its facilities since 2006, when it set its first GHG-reduction goal. The company also has a total of 11 solar arrays, including projects in Jamestown, N.Y., and Beijing, China.
“With all of our environmental sustainability goals, we want to maximize our impact,” says Mark Dhennin, director of energy and environment at Cummins. “Though it’s impractical to transfer the power directly to our facilities, it was very important to us to choose a project that added real renewable energy capacity in the marketplace while providing tangible environmental and community benefits. Our analysis showed that supporting wind power through a [virtual] PPA was the most cost-effective way to achieve the greatest greenhouse-gas reduction in Indiana.”
Vestas Supplying Turbines For Mexican Project
Zuma Energia has placed a firm and unconditional order with Vestas for the 424 MW Parque Eolico Reynosa project in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas, Mexico.
Vestas will be supplying 123 V136-3.45 MW turbines. The order includes supply and installation of the wind turbines, as well as a 15-year Active Output Management 5000 service contract. Delivery is expected to begin in late 2017, and commissioning is expected in 2018.
The project is part of the capacity awarded in Mexico’s second long-term electricity auction, held by the government’s Secretariat of Energy and National Energy Control Centre. Acciona has been commissioned to build the wind farm.
With this contract, Vestas’ order intake from Mexico’s energy auctions reaches almost 500 MW. Vestas says it pioneered the Mexican wind energy market back in 1994 when it installed the first commercial wind turbine in the country. With this new order, Vestas has more than 1.5 GW of wind turbines either installed or under construction in Mexico.
“Mexico is undergoing a historical moment in its energy policy, and we are extremely pleased to play an active role in this process. By building Mexico’s largest wind park with Vestas’ turbines, we are taking a bold step in the country’s transition towards renewables,” says Adrián Katzew, CEO of Zuma Energia.
“Tamaulipas has a leading position in the country within wind energy, and we are proud to be part of this by installing the Reynosa project,” adds Angélica Ruiz Celis, Vestas’ managing director for Mexico and northern Latin America. “The blades for V136-3.45 MW projects in Latin America will be produced in Mexico, which underlines our long-term localization strategy in Mexico and Vestas’ strong commitment to support Mexico’s renewable target of 35 percent of clean energy by 2024.”
Pattern Energy Acquires Majority Of Meikle Wind
Pattern Energy Group Inc. has completed the acquisition of a 51% interest in the 179 MW Meikle Wind facility from Pattern Energy Group LP (Pattern Development 1.0) for $68 million, which represents a 10x multiple of the five-year average cash available for distribution. The Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) acquired the remaining 49%.
Located in the Peace River Regional District of British Columbia, the Meikle Wind facility consists of 61 GE wind turbines, including 35 3.2 MW turbines and 26 2.75 MW turbines.
“Completing the acquisition of Meikle Wind adds British Columbia’s largest wind power facility to our portfolio and is one of the first initiatives in our new strategic relationship with PSP Investments,” says Mike Garland, CEO of Pattern Energy.
The purchase price of the Meikle Wind acquisition, funded from available cash, draws under the company’s revolving credit facility.
Meikle Wind commenced commercial operations in the first quarter of this year. It operates under a 25-year power purchase agreement with BC Hydro.