Minnesota regulators approve four Xcel wind power projects

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission has approved four Xcel wind power projects that will add 750 MW of capacity on Xcel Energy’s Upper Midwest grid. The projects represent a 42 percent increase in the company’s wind power capacity in the region.

Two of the approved projects, the 200-MW Courtenay Wind Farm in North Dakota and the 200-MW Odell Wind Farm in Minnesota, would provide energy under a power purchase agreement with Geronimo Energy. Two others, the 200-MW Pleasant Valley in Minnesota and the 150-MW Border Winds Project in North Dakota, would be developed by RES America Developments Inc. and have ownership transferred to Xcel.

Combined with proposals in the company’s Colorado and Texas/New Mexico service areas, Xcel has proposed adding a total of 1,900 MW of wind capacity this year, representing a company-wide increase in wind power capacity of 40 percent.

The North Dakota Public Service Commission is expected to consider the proposals by the end of 2013. The projects are expected to be in service by the end of 2015.

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