Xcel Energy announced plans today to build and own a new 300-megawatt wind farm in South Dakota.
With this project, Xcel Energy is poised to become the first utility in the nation to surpass 10,000 megawatts of wind on its system, the company said in a statement.
The Dakota Range I and II project, developed by Apex Clean Energy, is the first publicly announced wind project to advance under the phase down of federal tax credits.
Even without full tax credit, the project’s cost is low enough to compete with other fuel sources, an investment that is expected to lower customer bills over the project’s life, the company said.
“This is a milestone for our industry and our customers,” said Ben Fowke, chairman, president and CEO. “Wind provides the clean, competitively priced energy our customers want. This project proves we can keep driving the clean energy transition of our supply mix while keeping customer bills low, even as incentives phase out.”
Mark Goodwin, president and CEO of Apex. “Dakota Range Wind is an ideal fit for the Xcel Energy generation portfolio. Together, we will provide new local jobs and a significant source of long-term revenue for Grant and Codington counties, helping drive the South Dakota economy forward.”
The Dakota Range project, which will use Vestas turbines, is expected to be operational in 2021, pending regulatory approval. This increases Xcel Energy’s current wind proposals nationwide to 3,680 megawatts at 13 wind farms in seven states and expands Xcel Energy’s wind portfolio 55 percent company wide.