"We’re pleased to reach this agreement with Vestas, a world-class manufacturer of wind turbines. Securing this agreement is a major milestone in the development of our first wind energy park and continues our commitment to environmental stewardship," said John Russell, president and chief executive officer of Consumers Energy.
The contract was competitively bid and is contingent upon approval by the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC), as well as obtaining a special use permit from Mason County. Consumers Energy plans to file the contract with the MPSC later this year.
In a further step in its wind farm development plans, Consumers Energy recently issued a Request for Proposal to eight bidders for an engineering, procurement and construction contract for the balance of the work needed to construct the Lake Winds Energy Park.
Wind generation is a key part of Consumers Energy’s Balanced Energy Initiative, a comprehensive 20-year plan to meet the power needs of its 1.8 million electric customers with a balanced energy portfolio, including energy efficiency, renewable energy and customer demand management.
"Consumers Energy already is the largest supplier of renewable energy in Michigan. Today, four percent of the power we supply to customers comes from renewable sources in Michigan," said Russell. "By the end of 2012, including the addition of our Lake Winds Energy Park, about eight percent of the power that Consumers Energy supplies to customers is expected to come from Michigan-based renewable sources."
Consumers Energy, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), provides natural gas and electricity to nearly 6.5 million of Michigan’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.