Xcel plans South Dakota’s largest wind farm

Xcel Energy is planning South Dakota’s largest wind farm.

The proposed 600 megawatt Crown Ridge Wind Project, developed by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy, will be located in Codington, Deuel, and Grant counties. Once operational, the wind farm will produce enough cost-effective energy to power more than 300,000 homes, Xcel said.

It will be Xcel’s largest wind farm. The utility company has seven wind farms expected to be built in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Iowa pending regulatory approval.

Xcel is the nation’s top utility wind provider and is growing its regional wind portfolio by 60 percent, providing enough energy to power 800,000 homes.

“Wind prices are at historic lows and we’re moving forward with these projects to keep bills low for our customers,” said Chris Clark, president, Xcel Energy-North Dakota. “Our customers count on us to provide reliable and affordable energy and this investment will do just that.”

The combination of owned projects and power purchase agreements represents more than $2.5 billion in capital investment. Xcel estimates that the proposed wind projects will save more than $4 billion in fuel and other costs, over the life of the projects.

“As leaders in renewable energy, NextEra Energy Resources and Xcel Energy have developed a strong partnership over the past decade,” said Mike O’Sullivan, senior vice president of development for NextEra Energy Resources. “We are pleased to work together once again on the Foxtail, Crowned Ridge and Lake Benton Wind Projects. These projects will generate affordable, clean energy and bring good jobs and millions of dollars in taxes and economic benefits to their respective communities.”

Xcel estimates its plans are projected to generate approximately $200 million in property taxes over the life of the projects, including $75 million in South Dakota. In addition, the total number of projects are estimated to create approximately 1,500 construction jobs and about 80 full time jobs when all the wind farms are operational. Landowner payments are expected to total more than $150 million over the life of the projects. Wind developers generally estimate about 200 temporary construction jobs and a dozen full-time jobs for a large, 200 megawatt wind farm.

If approved, the projects are expected to be in service by 2020.


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Xcel plans South Dakota’s largest wind farm

Xcel Energy is planning South Dakota’s largest wind farm.

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