This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

July 21, 2004

Large Wind Power Plants Proposed for Wisconsin and Nevada

Wind energy companies are continuing to plan for the future, as large wind power plants are under development in Wisconsin and Nevada.

In Wisconsin, Invenergy Wind LLC is planning to build a 60-megawatt wind power plant near Brownsville, about 60 miles northwest of Milwaukee. Wisconsin Public Power Inc. (WPPI) and Madison Gas and Electric (MGE) have teamed up to buy all the power from the new facility for the first 20 years of operation. Called the Forward Energy Center, the new wind plant is expected to begin operating in August 2005. See the press releases from WPPI and MGE.

In Nevada, Navitas Energy has submitted a proposal to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Winnemucca Field Office to build an 80-megawatt wind power plant in the Dry Hills, about 22 miles northeast of Winnemucca in the north-central part of the state. Called the Getchell Wind Farm, the facility will consist of 40 wind turbines, each two megawatts in capacity. Although the BLM is just starting the environmental review process for the proposed wind plant, Navitas intends to begin construction in late spring of 2005, with commercial operation starting six to nine months later. See the press release from the BLM Winnemucca Field Office.

Nevada aims to boost renewable energy development in the state by providing investors with "additional reasonable guarantees that they will receive a fair return on their investments," according to Governor Kenny Guinn. New regulatory and legislative proposals would give the Nevada Public Utilities Commission (PUC) the authority to create a "Temporary Renewable Energy Development" trust to receive renewable energy payments from the utilities' customers and make scheduled payments to renewable developers for energy delivered to utilities. The proposals aim to alleviate investors' concerns about the financial status of the state's two investor-owned utilities. The proposals were filed with the PUC in early July, and Governor Guinn will work with the state legislature to make the needed statutory changes. See the governor's press release.