The contracts will provide roughly equal amounts of output to Ameren Illinois and ComEd, both for terms of 20 years and both beginning June 1, 2012.
Iberdrola Renewables will own the New Harvest Wind Power Project it is building in Crawford County, Iowa, immediately north and west of Schleswig, Iowa, on farmland. U.S. Highway 59 and Crawford County Road E-16 run through the project site.
‘We are delighted to welcome these two important Illinois utilities to our growing list of customers,’ said Barrett Stambler, vice president of Iberdrola Renewables. ‘Our New Harvest project will provide both companies with clean, cost-competitive, renewable energy for their Illinois business and residential customers.”
New Harvest will include 50 Gamesa G87 wind turbines and is expected to generate up to 100 MWs of electricity. Typically, a wind farm of this size can provide clean, renewable electricity to more than 35,000 typical homes. The estimated environmental benefits of the project will result in the annual offset of 335,000 tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to removing 64,000 cars from the road.
This project will help meet Illinois’s growing demand for electricity. Nationwide, customer demand for wind power is surging as utilities and municipalities add clean, renewable and homegrown power to their supplies. Wind power can serve as a hedge against volatile fossil fuel prices and has proven to be a reliable, low-cost source of energy.
Road construction at the New Harvest site began in 2010, then construction paused due to winter weather. Turbine deliveries and installation are expected to begin when weather permits in the spring. New Harvest is expected to create approximately 100 construction jobs, and five Iberdrola Renewables permanent operations and maintenance staff with approximately another 12 Gamesa contractors during the warranty period.
The New Harvest project will support the local economy with property tax payments expected to be in the millions of dollars over the life of the project. The property taxes will support schools, public health, fire, library, and other necessary services in Crawford County.
“We are excited to host the New Harvest Wind Project and its Operation and Maintenance building in our community,” said Syd Winquist, Mayor of the City of Schleswig. “The project will bring the City of Schleswig and Crawford County new construction jobs, new revenue to local landowners and businesses, significant tax revenues and much-needed long-term operation and maintenance jobs.”
Iberdrola Renewables, Inc. is headquartered in Portland, Ore., with more than 850 employees. It is part of the Iberdrola Renovables global group, the world’s leading provider of wind power with more than 11,000 MW of renewable energy installed around the world, and more than 4,300 MW of that wind power located in the U.S.