3 March 2005 - The northwestern US state of Idaho is to get its first utility-scale wind project, in response to the success of Idaho Power's Green Power Programme.
Using GE Energy technology, the Fossil Gulch wind park will use seven 1.5 MW turbines to generate 10.5 MW on a 416 acre farmland site near Hagerman, between Twin Falls and Boise.
Idaho Power will purchase the electricity generated by the park under a 20-year agreement, approved by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission.
The utility's Green Power Programme has provided customers with the opportunity to voluntarily contribute toward the purchase of energy from wind and solar resources. Since the programme began in 2001, more than 1800 customers have enrolled.
When completed, Fossil Gulch will be Idaho's largest wind project. According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), Idaho's previous largest wind project was a two-turbine installation with a capacity of 216 kW. The state has announced plans to develop projects ranging in size from 170 to 200 MW.