Wind energy project brings 522 MW to New Mexico

Xcel Energy broke ground on what will be the single largest wind energy plant in New Mexico. 

Upon completion in late 2020, the 522-megawatt Sagamore Wind Project, near Dora in Roosevelt County, New Mexico, is expected to boost the area’s power supply with clean, affordable wind energy.

This wind farm will also reduce fuel costs for Xcel Energy customers in both New Mexico and Texas. 

In total, the wind power project will create 240 Vestas wind turbines, capable of generating 522 megawatts of electricity and enough to power 194,000 typical homes annually. 

Xcel Energy expects 20 to 30 full-time, permanent positions will be created to support the operation and maintenance of the wind energy plant and will invest close to $900 million to complete the project.

David Hudson, president, Xcel Energy – New Mexico, Texas, believes this is a historic for Roosevelt County.

“We’ll see a significant economic boost to the New Mexico economy through increased jobs, royalty payments to landowners, and more revenue for county and school budgets,” said Hudson. “And for the next 25 years, Xcel Energy customers in both New Mexico and Texas will benefit from lower fuel costs since our fuel source is the free and abundant wind of eastern New Mexico.” 

Thanks to the completed wind energy facility, no fuel costs will be associated with the operation of Sagamore.

This, along with savings generated from the federal production tax credit, will make Sagamore one of the lowest-cost power plants on Xcel Energy’s regional system, Hudson said. 

Additionally, officials with Sagamore claim they will not use water in its production of emissions-free electricity. 

Most area power generating facilities require groundwater to cool the steam cycle, supplies of which are becoming increasingly difficult to procure on the semi-arid plains of eastern New Mexico and West Texas.