Pacific Power announced a new wind project near its recently completed Marengo facility in the hills near Dayton, Wash. When Marengo II begins commercial operation in June 2008, it will add 39 turbines, generating 70.2 megawatts of electricity.
With completion of the 140.4-megawatt Marengo I project in August, the company now owns and operates more wind generation than any other electric utility in the Pacific Northwest. Marengo II will solidify this leadership position, bringing total capability from the Columbia County, Washington, wind projects to 210.6 megawatts.
Marengo I is the second wind project completed by PacifiCorp in less than a year. In September 2006, the company brought the 100.5-megawatt Leaning Juniper 1 wind project near Arlington, Ore., into commercial operation. Besides Marengo II, PacifiCorp also recently announced plans to build two new wind projects in Wyoming.
Construction on the Marengo II project will begin this month. Like Marengo I, it was developed by RES America Developments Inc., a subsidiary of RES Americas Inc., and will be constructed under contract by RES America Construction Inc. (also a subsidiary of RES Americas Inc.). The 39 wind turbines, each capable of producing 1.8 megawatts, will be supplied by Vestas Americas. Vestas also will provide service and maintenance for the turbines for four years.
Constructing another project near our existing Marengo facility allows us to cost-effectively provide even more of the clean, renewable energy our customers are asking for and to meet the new renewable portfolio standards established in Washington and Oregon,? said Pat Reiten, president of Pacific Power. 揟he future of wind power in the region is very strong, and we are proud to be a leader in its development. We are thrilled that Dayton and the surrounding communities have been so supportive of our plans.?
The first Marengo project is just one of the renewable resources that PacifiCorp added in surpassing its commitment to have 400 megawatts of cost-effective new renewable resources in its generation portfolio by the end of 2007. This was a commitment made as part of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company抯 acquisition of PacifiCorp, finalized in March 2006. The Marengo II project is in addition to that commitment.
PacifiCorp recently increased its longer-term renewable resource target by announcing plans to acquire 2,000 megawatts of cost-effective renewable resources by 2013. In addition, the company has moved the target date for meeting its commitment of adding 1,400 megawatts of cost-effective renewable resources up from 2015 to 2010.
With renewable portfolio standards now mandated by Oregon, Washington and California, and the possibility of federal standards in the future, planning is underway at Pacific Power to determine how best to meet these standards once all the compliance rules are completed.
The Marengo II project is located on approximately 4,300 acres of agricultural land in Columbia County, though the actual project footprint is quite small, enabling the vast majority of the land to continue to be used for agricultural purposes. PacifiCorp is investing more than $100 million in the project, and this investment will have a beneficial impact on the county抯 tax base. Landowners will receive lease payments over the life of the facility.