The Aurora wind power project, which will involve an investment of around 450 million US dollars, is due to generate approximately 1.3 TWh annually upon completion, due by the end of 2020.
The wind energy facility is Enel Green Power’s second wind farm in North Dakota and, once completed, it will sell its energy to global apparel retailer Gap Inc. and local utility Basin Electric Power Cooperative. With Aurora, Enel Green Power is currently building wind energy and solar projects in the US for a total capacity of over 1.5 GW
Enel, through its US-based renewable company Enel Green Power North America, has started construction of the 299 MW Aurora wind farm in North Dakota. Expected to be fully operational by the end of 2020, the construction of the facility will involve an investment of around 450 million US dollars. Aurora is supported by a new power purchase agreement (PPA) for the sale of power generated by a portion of the plant to local utility Basin Electric Power Cooperative, which comes after the virtual PPA with Gap Inc. signed earlier this year.
“The construction of Aurora demonstrates Enel Green Power’s strength as an integrated developer-builder-operator in North America, expanding our presence in key regions and providing flexible solutions tailored to help commercial customers achieve their sustainability goals,” said Antonio Cammisecra, CEO of Enel Green Power. “Given our expertise in renewables and the favorable long-term economic outlook for the sector, this project is another example of corporate and utility partnerships leveraging renewable energy for both its sustainable features and economic profitability.”
With Aurora, Enel Green Power is currently building over 1.5 GW of wind power and solar capacity. Other Enel Green Power projects are the 236.5 MW White Cloud wind farm in Missouri, the 66 MW Whitney Hill wind power project in Illinois and the 450 MW High Lonesome wind energy project and 497 MWdc Roadrunner solar project both in Texas.
Enel Green Power North America is a leading owner and operator of renewable energy plants in North America with projects operating and under development in 25 US states and two Canadian provinces. The company operates around 100 plants with a managed capacity of around 5 GW powered by renewable hydropower, wind, geothermal and solar energy.
The 23-year bundled PPA with Basin Electric Power Cooperative involves the purchase of energy delivered to the grid by a 142 MW portion of the Aurora wind farm. In addition to Aurora, Basin Electric also purchases the full 150 MW electricity output of EGPNA’s Lindahl wind farm also located in North Dakota.
EGPNA will also sell the energy produced by a 90 MW portion of Aurora to Gap Inc. through a 12-year virtual PPA announced in August of this year. The electricity output purchased by Gap Inc. will be enough to power over 1,500 of its retail stores, equivalent to around 50% of the electricity needs of the more than 3,300 stores operated by Gap Inc. worldwide. This electricity output is expected to total nearly 400 GWh each year, equivalent to avoiding the emission of about 262,000 tons of CO2 per year.
Aurora, under construction in Williams and Mountrail counties in North Dakota, is Enel Green Power’s second project in the state. The project is located near the 150 MW Lindahl wind farm in Williams County, which began operations in 2017. Once fully operational, the 299 MW Aurora wind project will be able to generate approximately 1.3 TWh annually while avoiding the emission of around 850,000 tons of CO2 per year.
During construction and operation of the project, EGPNA will initiate activities aimed at further improving its environmental impact, while identifying opportunities that create long-term value for both the community and the project. These initiatives include support for emergency response equipment and coordinated drill training with local volunteer fire districts; investment in the Nesson Public School District #2’s science, technology, engineering, and math programs; and scholarships for host school district students to attend the wind technician training program at Lake Region State College.
Enel Green Power is the Enel Group’s company dedicated to the development and operation of renewables across the world, with a presence in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and Oceania. Enel Green Power is a global leader in the green energy sector with a managed capacity of more than 43 GW across a generation mix that includes wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower, and is at the forefront of integrating innovative technologies into renewable power plants.