Windpower - USA

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Wyoming, Colorado Inventors Develop Cross-Flow Wind Turbine
By US Fed News ALEXANDRIA, Va., March 14 -- Scott J. Taylor and Ronald Taylor, both of Cheyenne, Wyo., and Brad C. Cochran and David Banksl, both of Fort Collins, Colo., have developed a method of capturing wind energy that uses a cross-flow wind turbine in an efficient manner.
According to the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office: "Disclosed are various embodiments of cross-wind turbines that are capable of providing high efficiencies over a wide range of wind velocities. An airfoil stator causes wind to accelerate along its surface and creates a low pressure area on the leading face of the rotor blade during the power stroke. A blocking stator blocks wind from impeding the movement of the rotor blades during the return cycle and directs wind onto the trailing face of the rotor blades during the power cycle. A large pressure differential is created between the leading face of the rotor blade and the trailing face of the rotor blade during the power cycle which creates a large amount of force that rotates the rotor blade about the central shaft."

An abstract of the invention, released by the Patent Office, said: "In some embodiments, gaps are provided between the inside edge of the rotor blade and a stationary shaft which vents wind collected by the rotor blade during certain portions of the rotation cycle. The vented wind increases the pressure on the trailing face of the rotor blades during the return cycle to further assist in the efficiency of this system."

The inventors were issued U.S. Patent No. 7,189,050 on March 13.

The patent has been assigned to Terra Moya Aqua Inc., Cheyenne.

The original application was filed on Nov. 21, 2005, and is available at:,189,050.PN.&OS=PN/7,189,050&RS=PN/7,189,050 .

For more information about US Fed News federal patent awards please contact: Myron Struck, Managing Editor/US Bureau, US Fed News, Direct: 703/866-4708, Cell: 703/304-1897,

HTS akmf 070314-200172

Turbine blades excel in winds that blow slow
A blade developed by researchers at Sandia National Laboratories should make wind turbines more efficient at low-wind speeds. The sweep-twist adaptive rotor (Star) is the first blade of its kind produced in utility-grade size. The gently curved tip, or sweep, is intended for regions like the Midwest where wind speeds average about 13 mph at 10-m high. Sweep lets the blade respond to gusts in a manner that lowers fatigue loads on the blade. Low-wind-speed sites are abundant in the U.S. the lowspeed turbines could increase the land area that can be economically developed for wind energy twenty-fold.
The 27.1-m blade, made of fiberglass and epoxy resin, is almost 3 m longer than the ones it will replace.

Researchers at Sandia Labs test a new sweep-twist adaptive rotor blade for wind turbines by loading it with 55-gallon drums filled with weights.

Developer to build 192-MW North Dakota wind farm plus fuel cell
Chicago-based developer Just Wind on Monday plans to build a $320 million, 192-MW wind farm in North Dakota that may include a $10 million hydrogen fuel cell project to store energy as a backup for when the wind does not blow, a company executive said Monday. The fuel cell would enable the power output to be considered firm and it could draw a higher sales price, Jeffrey Metzger, president, said. The developer is a private investor. Metzger said he expects to file an application for a permit in the next week or so with the North Dakota Public Service Commission.
The Just Wind project would be located in Logan County and would go into operation in summer 2008, Metzger said. The project would consist of 80 turbines that are 2.4 MW in size.

Just Wind plans to contract for the bulk of the power with utilities or marketers. But the remainder would be traded on the wholesale market "to take advantage of the price fluctuations of the market when it is volatile," said Metzger. "You don't want to cut yourself out of the market."

Wind Industry Has Lots of Power
The wind power generating industry is growing in the US. In 2005 capacity increased by 2454 MW of capacity in 2006, a 27% increase over 2005, and is forecast to increase by another 26% this year, according to the American Wind Energy Assn. Investment in wind capacity totaled $4 billion last year. Wind was one of the largest sources of new power generation in the country in 2006, second only to natural gas for the second year in a row. New wind farms boosted total US installed wind energy capacity to 11,603 MW, enough to produce 31 billion IcWh of electricity and serve 2.9 million homes.
The top five states in new installations were Texas (774 MW), Washington (428 MW), California (212 MW), New York (185 MW), and Minnesota (150 MW). New wind turbine manufacturing plants opened in Iowa, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania. Additional manufacturing plants are expected to open this year.

Renewable Energy Services to build 90-MW wind farm in Washington
Renewable Energy Systems America expects to receive by June a permit to build the 90-MW Marengo II wind farm in Columbia County near Dayton, Washington, officials said Monday. The county plans to hold an informational meeting to discuss the project with local stakeholders on April 11 and a public hearing on April 18, said Clark Posey, the Columbia County planner.
RES would like to start building in June on the energy facility that would cover 4,350 acres of rolling hills and farmland, said Scott Piscitello, RES' Portland, Oregon-based vice president of development. Marengo II would go online in late 2007.

There has been little opposition to the project, as studies show the bird-kill rate is very low, Posey said. The project would receive transmission from PacifiCorp or from the Bonneville Power Administration, which have lines nearby. The wind farm would be located adjacent to the 140-MW Marengo I wind farm that RES unit Blue Sky Wind developed and sold to PacifiCorp in October.

The next step towards a controversial $2 billion wind farm on the Lammermoor Range in Central Otago will be made public next week. A report by Central Otago District Council-contracted planner David Whitney on Project Hayes has been completed and will be made public after Easter, the council's planning and environment manager, Louise Van der Voort, said.
If the wind farm proceeds it could become the biggest in the southern hemisphere with up to 176 turbines on 92 square kilometres in the Styx-Paerau Valley, 50km south of Ranfurly.

It would potentially generate up to 630MW, more power than the Benmore hydro-electric station and enough to supply 260,000 homes.

After the release of the new report, a panel of Central Otago District councillors led by independent commissioner John Matthews will decide on the proposal, guided by the report as well as submissions and evidence received during a public resource-consent hearing starting on April 30.

Whitney's recommendations remained secret yesterday but artist Grahame Sydney said he hoped they would oppose the proposal.

Central Otago Mayor Malcolm Macpherson believes whatever decision the council's panel makes, it is likely to be appealed to the Environment Court.

There has been widespread opposition to the proposal from farmers in the area and high- profile advocates for the environment based in Central Otago.

AEP Seeks First Wind Power Supplies for Eastern States
American Electric Power Tuesday issued two requests for proposals (RFP) seeking long-term wind energy purchase agreements, the first steps toward a goal of adding 1,000 MW of new wind energy by 2011. The RFPs seek up to 260 MW for AEP's Appalachian Power utility unit and up to 100 MW for its Indiana Michigan Power utility unit. The 360 MW total equals almost 60% of the currently installed wind generation in the PJM Interconnection, which covers all or parts of 13 states from Illinois to North Carolina to New Jersey.
The deadline for bids is April 30, with delivery to begin the end of 2008, the current expiration of the federal production tax credit for wind. Information can be found at for Indiana Michigan Power and for Appalachian Power.

The wind power purchases, if approved by regulators, will mark AEP's first commercial use of wind energy in its seven eastern states, with Indiana, Michigan, Virginia and West Virginia sites to be among those considered for the wind farms. AEP currently owns two wind farms in Texas with a total capacity of 310 MW and has long-term contracts to purchase 467 MW from wind farms in Oklahoma and Texas owned by third parties. Much of the 1,000 MW of wind energy AEP plans to add by 2011 is expected to be located in the PJM Interconnection and serve customers in AEP's eastern states.

"With Congress expected to take action on greenhouse gas limits, this added fuel diversity will prove important for our customers and shareholders," said AEP CEO Michael G. Morris.

AEP is part of a joint venture seeking to build new transmission lines in Texas to connect new wind energy resources to the grid (see Power Market Today, Feb. 28).

AEP's plan to add 1,000 MW of wind capacity by 2011 is part of its strategy to capture, reduce, avoid or offset greenhouse gas emissions. AEP recently announced its intent to install carbon capture on two existing coal-fired power plants, the first commercial use of technologies to significantly reduce carbon dioxide emissions from existing plants. Technologies being advanced by AEP's plan include both post-combustion and pre-combustion solutions.

In addition to the carbon capture and wind plans, components of AEP's climate strategy include domestic greenhouse gas offsets through agriculture, forestry and other projects; power plant efficiency improvements; and demand-side management/end-use energy efficiency programs to be developed with state regulators.

Xcel the top-rated wind power utility
Gargi Chakrabarty, Rocky Mountain News
The American Wind Energy Association on Wednesday ranked Xcel Energy as the No. 1 wind power utility in the United States. At the end of 2006, Xcel had 1,323 megawatts of wind on its system, with 307.7 megawatts in Colorado. One megawatt of wind power produces enough electricity on average to serve 250 to 300 homes. "We're committed to increasing our use of clean, abundant, renewable power throughout our service territory and minimizing our impact on the environment," said Dick Kelly, Xcel's chairman, president and CEO.
This comes on the heels of another ranking by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory last week that named Xcel's Windsource program, which has 39,440 customers in Colorado, the top green pricing program in the country.

In 2006, the wind energy industry installed more than 2,400 megawatts of new power generation in the country, an investment of about $4 billion
GE Wind Turbines Deliver over 1 Gigawatt of Additional U.S. Capacity in 2006
ATLANTA - (BUSINESS WIRE) - Reaffirming its position as the leading supplier of technology and services for the U.S. wind industry, GE Energy (NYSE: GE) provided wind turbines representing over 45% of the country's new wind capacity in 2006. The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) reported today that U.S. wind power generating capacity increased by 27% in 2006 and is expected to increase an additional 26% in 2007. The U.S. wind industry installed more than 2.4 gigawatts of new wind capacity during the year, with GE wind turbines accounting for nearly half of that total. GE supplied 764 of its 1.5-megawatt wind turbines for U.S. projects in 2006.
"This achievement reflects the tremendous strides wind power is making, as power producers are increasingly turning to renewable energy solutions to diversify and expand their generation portfolios," said Victor Abate, Vice President-Renewables for GE Energy. "Our continued investment in wind energy technology has positioned us well to compete in this growing industry. We are confident that wind power - an abundant, domestic and zero-carbon emissions resource - will be an integral part of the U.S. energy mix throughout the 21st century."

"With some of the world's best wind resources, the U.S. has the potential to greatly increase its wind energy output in the years ahead," Abate added.

Since entering the wind business in 2002, GE Energy has continued to expand its wind energy operations, increasing its wind engineering team threefold and applying experience and expertise from other GE business units to advance its wind turbine technology.

Today the company is the largest U.S. supplier of wind turbines by a wide margin and among the largest in the world, with wind turbine manufacturing facilities in the United States, Canada, Germany, Spain and China.

Randall Swisher, AWEA executive director, noted that "the demand for clean, cost-effective wind power is growing fast, and the U.S. wind energy industry has turned in a record-breaking performance in 2006 to meet that demand. Our association expects an even larger increase in new installations in 2007. Wind power is now one of the largest sources of new power generation in the U.S., and an essential element of the climate change solution."

At the end of 2006, the U.S. wind industry received a major boost with the extension of the federal production tax credit.

GE Energy's wind turbine technology is a key element of ecomagination, the GE corporate-wide initiative to develop and market technologies that will help customers address pressing environmental concerns.

About GE Energy

GE Energy ( ) is one of the world's leading suppliers of power generation and energy delivery technologies, with 2006 revenue of $19 billion. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, GE Energy works in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; and other alternative fuels. Numerous GE Energy products are certified under ecomagination, GE's corporate-wide initiative to aggressively bring to market new technologies that will help customers meet pressing environmental challenges.

With wind turbine design, manufacturing and assembly facilities in Germany, Spain, China, Canada and the United States, GE Energy is among the leading providers of wind energy products and support services ranging from commercial wind turbines and grid integration products to project development assistance and operation and maintenance. The company's knowledge base includes the development and/or installation of more than 7,500 wind turbines with a total rated output of more than 9,800 megawatts.

Missouri Generators Developing Over 1,900 Megawatts of New Renewable Energy
SUGAR LAND, TX -- (MARKET WIRE) -- Apr 13, 2007 -- Researched by Industrial Info Resources (Sugar Land, Texas). Power producers in Missouri are looking at renewable energy as an alternative for the state's future power needs. The power producers are evaluating sixteen sites equaling about 1,900 megawatts (MW) of renewable generation. These proposed projects would represent about 33% of the new power generation being planned in the state. For details, view the entire article by subscribing to Industrial Info's Premium Industry News at , or browse other breaking industrial news stories at .
Industrial Info Resources (IIR) provides marketing communication services ranging from industrial database solutions to market forecasting, custom analytics, and specialty promotions that support high-level image campaigns. For more information send inquiries to or visit us online at .

UPC Wind's Proposed 57 Megawatt Stetson Wind Project in Maine Reaches Major Milestones
BOSTON - (BUSINESS WIRE) - UPC Wind, a leading North American wind power company, today announced key milestones for its proposed 57 megawatt (MW) Stetson Wind Project, which will be situated on a ridge in Washington County, Maine. With the promise to provide revenue and new jobs for the surrounding area, the project has received support from key community leaders including the Chairman of the Washington County Commissioners. In addition, the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC) recently deemed the project's rezoning petition as complete, which will set the stage for a full review of the project by LURC along with public hearings.
"We are pleased that UPC Wind has proposed this project for Washington County as it will bring important benefits to the community including jobs and clean wind technology," said Chairman Christopher Gardner of the Washington County Commissioners. "We are impressed with the initial plans presented by UPC Wind and we look forward to making the Stetson Wind Project a reality."

The proposed Stetson Wind Project will produce over 150 million kilowatt-hours of electricity annually - enough to power about 27,500 homes per year. Generating that amount of electricity using oil and gas would emit 107,500 metric tons of pollutants; the Stetson Wind Project will emit no pollutants. The project would consist of the construction and operation of 38 GE 1.5 MW wind turbines. With about 5,000 GE 1.5MW turbines in service in the U.S. as of today, they are considered the most reliable in the wind industry.

As part of the project, UPC Wind expects to employ hundreds of people during the design, engineering and construction of the facility, with the potential for local employment on road, foundation and electrical line construction work. The proposed site was carefully selected based on a number of factors including 1) the ridge's location is an excellent source of wind, 2) the location has no residential property currently closer than 2,500 feet, and 3) minimal environmental impact. The ridge, which had historically been used for logging, provides existing roads that will be improved during construction, and two-thirds of the needed transmission lines will be in the same area as existing electric lines.

"Together with UPC Wind's facility in Mars Hill, the proposed Stetson Wind Project will generate enough clean wind energy to power about 50,000 homes," said Paul Gaynor, President and CEO of UPC Wind. "Although this project is still in the early planning and permitting stages, we are encouraged by the positive feedback we have received from Commissioner Gardner and the people of Washington County. We consider the people of Maine our long-term partner in the effort to increase America's sources of clean and renewable energy, and will continue to work closely with them throughout this process."

In addition to increasing domestic energy production and increasing energy security, wind power is considered cost competitive with conventional sources of electricity, such as oil or gas. Unlike traditional polluting sources of energy, wind has no fuel cost, therefore serving as a natural hedge against volatile fuel prices, which constitutes a significant portion of monthly electricity bills in most markets in the US. Wind power also emits no greenhouse gases or other damaging pollutants.

About UPC Wind

UPC Wind is based in Newton, Massachusetts, with offices in Maine, Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, California, Oregon and Hawaii. UPC Wind is an American-owned company, with a proven track record of developing, owning and operating well-sited, community-friendly wind farms that increase energy independence. Additional information on UPC Wind can be found at .

Alliant plans to build big wind farm
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Alliant Energy plans to buy and develop a wind energy farm that could become the largest in Iowa, producing up to 200 megawatts of electricity. Key parts of the farm's wind turbines would be assembled at a factory in Cedar Rapids, according to the announcement Wednesday by a Cedar Rapids-based division of Alliant.
Alliant's plan is the second major Iowa wind energy project to be announced this month.

Des Moines-based MidAmerican Energy announced last week that it would add up to 540 megawatts of wind-generating capacity at undetermined sites, nearly doubling its wind-energy output.

About 950 wind turbines now generate 936 megawatts of electricity in Iowa, about 5 percent of the state's total, according to the American Wind Energy Association and the Iowa Utilities Board.

Alliant said it's negotiating with California-based Clipper Windpower Inc. to purchase Clipper's Eclipse Wind Farm under development in southern Audubon and Guthrie counties near Adair.

Construction of wind turbines to produce 100 megawatts of electricity is expected to begin in 2009, with commercial operation anticipated later that year.

The farm would become Iowa's largest single wind energy project if its built to its full capacity of 200 megawatts, an Alliant statement said.

The project is subject to approval by the utilities board.

Alliant plans to use Clipper's Liberty-series wind turbine generators, the largest built in the United States, the utility said. Each turbine can produce up to 2.5 megawatts of electricity.

Key mechanical components are assembled at Clipper's plant in Cedar Rapids.


Information from: The Des Moines Register,

Texas tops in wind with 2,769 MW: AWEA
Texas had the most installed wind generation capacity at the end of 2006, with 2,768 MW, the American Wind Energy Association said Wednesday. California was second with 2,361 MW, AWEA said. Iowa, Minnesota and Washington rounded out the top five, with 936 MW, 895 MW and 818 MW of wind capacity, respectively, AWEA said.
In its commentary on the rankings, AWEA said Washington moved into fifth place, ahead of Oklahoma, with the addition of the Big Horn and Wild Horse projects. AWEA also said Iowa and Minnesota look likely to break the 1,000 MW mark in 2007 and Washington will come close with the 140-MW Marengo project that is currently under construction.

AWEA said its top five "managing owners" of wind energy installations were: FPL Energy with 4,016 MW; PPM Energy with 1,058 MW; MidAmerican Energy Holdings at 593 MW, of which MidAmerican Energy owns 460 MW and PacifiCorp 133 MW; Babcock & Brown with 559 MW and Goldman Sachs/ Horizon Wind Energy with 452 MW.

The congressional districts with the most installed wind power by the end of 2006 were: Texas' 19th district, with 1,419 MW, whose interests are represented by Republican Randy Neugebauer; California's 10th district, with 920 MW, represented by Democrat Ellen Tauscher; Texas' 11th district, 847 MW, represented by Republican Mike Conaway; California's 22nd district, 707 MW, represented by Republican Kevin McCarthy; and Minnesota's 1st district, 537 MW, whose interests are represented by Democrat Tim Walz, AWEA said.

Annual Wind Power Rankings of US suggest Steady Growth in Market
AWEA (American Wind Energy Association) has come up with its recent annual rankings that suggest a steady growth in market. "These wind power rankings tell the story of a vibrant industry that is growing fast, competing hard, gaining market share, and all the while powering a cleaner, stronger America," Randall Swisher, executive director with AWEA, said in a statement that ElectricNet published on April 18, 2007. The rankings released by the Association list the states that produce most power from wind, largest wind farms in the nation, leading wind turbine suppliers, and other information about the wind energy industry. Also included in the rankings of this year is a new category "Congressional districts having most wind-power installed".
However, PTC (Production Tax Credit) for renewable energy needs to be extended for a long term to keep this growth going. Since, the short term extensions in the past have resulted in nothing but a "boom & bust" cycle in this industry, causing costs to go up along the supply chain and averting businesses from attaining their potential growth.

Total installed capacity of wind power in the US is above 11, 600 - enough to meet the energy needs of around three million households on average. Texas - home to three out of five biggest wind farms in the US - uses wind to generate most of its electricity. The city has an installed capacity of 2, 768 Mega Watt (MW). Next to Texas is California with an installed capacity of 2,361 MW, as per AWEA.

RNCOS report "Global Wind Energy Market (2006)" notifies, "Year 2005 saw record rise in the US wind energy industry with almost 2,500 MW new power generating equipments being installed in 22 states. Year 2005 is estimated to be even larger with an estimated installed capacity of 3000 MW."

This research reports "Global Wind Energy Market (2006)" provides extensive research and objective analysis of the Global Wind Energy Industry. Key facts and issues analyzed in the report include: factors leading to success of wind energy, opportunities and challenges for the players of this industry, potential future market in global wind energy, ongoing trends in potential wind energy markets, etc.

About RNCOS E-Services Pvt Ltd.:

RNCOS, incorporated in the year 2002, is an industry research firm. It has a team of industry experts who analyze data collected from credible sources. They provide industry insights and analysis that helps corporations to take timely and accurate business decision in today's globally competitive environment.

For more information visit: Current Industry News:

M2 Communications Ltd disclaims all liability for information provided within M2 PressWIRE. Data prepared by named party/parties. Further information on M2 PressWIRE can be obtained at on the world wide web. Inquiries to

Florida Inventor Develops Protective Wind Energy Conversion Chamber
By US Fed News ALEXANDRIA, Va., May 10 -- Saverio Scalzi of Hollywood, Fla., has developed a method for converting wind energy from an ambient wind current.
According to the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office: "A protective wind energy conversion chamber provides a protected multiple turbine mechanism axially aligned to convert kinetic energy of a moving fluid (e.g., wind) into rotational mechanical power by the reaction of the moving fluid with the turbine. The conversion chamber may either be configured as a vertical axis wind turbine or horizontal axis wind turbine."

An abstract of the invention, released by the Patent Office, said: "The conversion chamber repositions an intake windward to collect and concentrate the wind prior to converting the wind into energy via the axially aligned multi-turbine mechanism. The remaining wind is released via a leeward-facing exhaust. Completely enclosed by the protective wind energy conversion chamber, the axially aligned multi-turbine mechanism avoids interference by birds and other outside objects."

The inventor was issued U.S. Patent No. 7,215,037 on May 8.

The original application was filed on Nov. 19, 2004, and is available at:,215,037.PN.&OS=PN/7,215,037&RS=PN/7,215,037 .

For more information about US Fed News federal patent awards please contact: Myron Struck, Managing Editor/US Bureau, US Fed News, Direct: 703/866-4708, Cell: 703/304-1897,

MHI Wins Massive Wind Turbine Orders from U.S. Firms
Tokyo, May 30 (Jiji Press)-- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. said Wednesday it has received huge orders for wind turbine power generation systems from five U.S. wind power generation developers. Mitsubishi Heavy has won orders for a total of 788 large wind turbines, with a collective power generation capacity of 1,363.4 megawatts, it said.
The value of the deals is seen totaling some 200 billion yen.

The collective power generation capacity of the systems falls just short of Japan's total wind turbine power generation capacity of 1,495.27 megawatts as of the end of March, according to Mitsubishi Heavy.

This is the first time that Mitsubishi Heavy has received such a large number of orders for wind turbines at around the same time, it said.

Deliveries will begin this year and be completed in 2009, it said.

The five U.S. firms include Edison Mission Energy, Babcock & Brown, Airtricity Inc. and Eurus Energy America.

As of the end of 2006, the United States had a wind power generation capacity of 11,635 megawatts, the second highest in the world, according to Mitsubishi Heavy.

A large number of wind turbines are expected to be installed in the country in the coming years, as the U.S. government is supporting wind power generation through tax benefits and other measures to promote the use of renewable energy sources, Mitsubishi Heavy said.

Babcock & Brown scraps plans to build 500-MW wind farm off Texas
The Texas General Land Office Wednesday said global investment firm Babcock & Brown has decided not to develop a 500-MW wind farm that Superior Renewable Energy--a firm B&B acquired last August--had been planning at an offshore site near Padre Island National Seashore. Agency spokesman Jim Suydam said that B&B invoked its right under the agreement to stop making lease payments on the roughly 40,000-acre wind-farm site. Superior had entered into the lease agreement with land office three months before the company was acquired by B&B. B&B officials could not be reached for comment.
Suydam said that the site is one of the best for wind-farm development along the Texas coast and that other companies already are expressing interest in entering into a lease deals.

He said Louisiana-based Wind Energy Systems Technologies is proceeding with plans for what will likely be Texas' first offshore wind farm--a 150-MW facility off the coast of Galveston that could begin operating by 2009.

PPM unit files with Minnesota PUC to build 100-MW wind farm
A PPM Energy subsidiary Tuesday asked the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission for permission to build a 100-MW wind farm in the southwestern part of the state. The Portland, Oregon-based wind developer plans to build the project near Trimont, Minnesota, and bring it online by the end of 2008 so it can qualify for federal production tax credits. PPM expects the wind farm to have a 35% to 45% capacity factor, allowing it to produce from 306,000 MWh to 393,500 MWh/year. PPM did not disclose the cost to build the project.
PPM plans to sell the project's output to Minnesota utilities, which face a requirement that 25% of their power supply come from renewable sources by 2025. Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy must have 30% of its supply come from renewable resources by 2020.

Under Minnesota's renewable portfolio standard, Xcel will need to raise its wind supply by nearly 12% by 2011, PPM said. Minnesota Power will need to boost its renewable supply by 2.5% by 2011, while Great River Energy and Dairyland Power Cooperative will need to add 3% to their supply portfolios.

Minnesota had 895 MW of installed wind capacity by the end of 2006, said the American Wind Energy Association, which believes the state has 75,000 MW of wind potential.

PPM Energy has two projects in Minnesota totaling 151 MW and also is building a 150 MW project, the company told the regulators.

Oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens wants to build world's largest wind farm
LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - Billionaire T. Boone Pickens is planning to cash in on the wind energy boom by building the world's largest wind farm in West Texas. The oil tycoon wants to install large wind turbines in parts of four Panhandle counties in a project that would produce up to 4,000 megawatts of electricity, Pickens spokesman Mike Boswell said Wednesday.
If Pickens' company, Mesa Power LP, does build the wind farm it would be the largest in the world, American Wind Energy Association spokeswoman Susan Williams Sloan said. It would generate more than five times the 735 megawatts produced at the present largest wind farm near Abilene.

One megawatt is enough to power 250 homes in Texas, Sloan said.

Pickens' proposal, which would cost as much as $6 billion, would fall just short of nearly doubling what Texas had at the end of 2006, when wind power totaled about 2,700 megawatts, she said.

Not all planned wind projects in Texas become reality, though. Earlier this week, a developer who planned to build what would have been the nation's largest offshore wind farm in South Texas called off the project because it didn't make economic sense.

Texas, which stood to gain from the project because it owns the submerged land up to 10.3 miles from the state's coast, learned a month ago that Babcock & Brown Ltd., an Australian investment bank, was giving up its 30-year lease on nearly 40,000 acres in the Gulf of Mexico off Padre Island.

Construction of Pickens' project would begin in 2010 and involve as many as 200,000 acres in Roberts, Gray, Hemphill and Wheeler counties, Boswell said. The farm would have as many as 2,000 wind turbines, and some would be large enough to generate 2.5 megawatts each.

Pickens met Tuesday in Pampa with about 250 area landowners. He couldn't be reached for comment Wednesday.

"We have entered into a limited number of agreements with a limited number of landowners to put in some test towers," Boswell said.

Landowner deals for Mesa Power were expected to be finalized by the summer's end, he said.

Another of Pickens' companies, Mesa Water Inc., has plans to pump water from West Texas and sell it to urban areas. Some landowners who attended the Tuesday meeting already had sold Pickens the rights to water from the Ogallala Aquifer beneath their land.

"We've mated those two together but haven't said you have to have one to have the other," Boswell said.

Pickens' wind farm proposal could get help from the state. The Public Utility Commission this week began hearings involving parties interested in developing wind farms and in installing transmission systems.

In 2005, Texas legislators passed a law directing the commission to establish Competitive Renewable Energy Zones.

Constellation signs PPA for power from 198-MW Illinois wind farm
Constellation Energy Commodities Group, Baltimore-based Constellation Energy's wholesale origination and risk-management subsidiary, said Wednesday it has signed an 18-year renewable energy power purchase deal with Horizon Wind Energy for all of the 198-MW output of the Twin Groves II wind farm near Bloomington, Illinois. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the contract terms will commence when the project is completed and producing power. The 120-turbine farm, which will be connected to the PJM Interconnection grid, is currently being built and construction is set to be complete in early 2008, Constellation said.
Horizon Wind Energy, a unit of Energias de Portugal, develops, builds, owns and operates wind farms throughout the US and in Costa Rica. It is currently developing a portfolio of more than 9,000 MW in a dozen states and expects to bring 1,000 MW online in 2007.

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