ACCIONA Energía will build its second wind farm in Texas —the company’s ninth in the U.S. — which will increase ACCIONA’s U.S. wind power capacity to 866 megawatts (MW). An investment of around $200 million (over 160 million euros at the current exchange rate), Palmas Altas will have a capacity of 144.9 MW and be equipped with 46 wind turbines of Nordex technology. Grid connection is planned for November 2019.
Located in Cameron County, near the San Roman wind farm that ACCIONA started up in December 2016, the new facility will produce around 524 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of clean energy per year, equivalent to the consumption of 43,000 U.S. households, and offset the emission of 503,000 metric tons of CO2 to the atmosphere from coal-fired power stations.
“We are proud to undertake a new wind power project that consolidates the reactivation of our investment activity in the United States and confirms our commitment to grow in a controlled and profitable manner in a market that continues to offer very interesting opportunities for the renewables sector,” said Rafael Esteban, CEO of ACCIONA Energy USA Global LLC.
The Palmas Altas project will employ approximately 170 people at the peak of construction and will be staffed by a 10-person operations team. Over its 25-year lifespan, Palmas Altas is expected to generate $40 million in local tax revenue, as well as more than $44 million in lease payments to local landowners.
The wind turbines to be installed in Palmas Altas will be Nordex’s AW125/3150 model with a rotor diameter of 125 meters, mounted on an 87.5-meter steel tower (hub height).
The energy produced by the wind farm will be sold in the ERCOT-South Texas wholesale market.
ACCIONA Energía currently owns and operates eight wind farms in the United States. In addition to San Roman (93 MW), mentioned above, the company has three others in Oklahoma (329 MW), two in the Dakotas (192 MW), one in Illinois (101 MW), and one in Iowa (6 MW). It also has a 64 MW CSP plant in the Nevada Desert.
In addition to Palmas Altas, ACCIONA Energía has other wind power projects in its pipeline that will increase its operational capacity in the United States.