RFPs for new wind energy projects in Arizona

Tucson Electric Power, or TEP, and UniSource Energy Services, or UES, have issued a joint request for proposals, or RFPs, for new Arizona-based wind farm projects that could produce up to 50MW of renewable power.

The process will be conducted online by Accion Group, Inc., which has served as the independent monitor of the companies’ previous renewable energy RFPs.

While TEP and UES have focused on developing solar power systems, both companies are preparing to integrate significant wind power into their renewable energy portfolios this year, the company said.

TEP has agreed to purchase the output of Element Power’s 50-MW Macho Springs Wind Farm near Deming, N.M., while UES will buy the output of Western Wind Energy’s 10-MW wind farm near Kingman. Both systems are expected to begin commercial operation in the third quarter of 2011.

UniSource Energy Corporation is a US-based company with consolidated assets of approximately $3.7 billion. Its primary subsidiaries include Tucson Electric Power, which serves more than 402,000 customers in southern Arizona, and UniSource Energy Services, provider of natural gas and electric service for about 237,000 customers in northern and southern Arizona, the company added.