ST. PAUL – The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (Commission) approved Xcel Energy’s proposal to repower the existing 100.5 megawatt Grand Meadow Wind Farm in Mower County. This investment will ensure Xcel’s customers will have reliable power from carbon free resources into the future.
“With each of these renewable energy projects the Commission approves, it provides renewable energy a more stable future in Minnesota and helps us move toward a lower carbon- generation fleet. In addition to the positive environmental effects, these renewable energy projects will save consumers on their electric bills,” said Commissioner Valerie Means.
The Grand Meadow Wind Farm project is expected to bring up to 150 jobs during construction and six full-time positions needed for operations and maintenance will continue once construction is complete. The project is estimated to result in $475,000 in annual tax revenues for Mower County and approximately $12 million over the anticipated life of the project.
“Continued investments in Minnesota’s renewable infrastructure helps ensure these valuable assets give a long-term economic boost to Minnesota’s rural economy,” said Commissioner John Tuma. “Lease payments from these projects can also help our farmers weather economic volatility like what we are seeing this year.”
The Grand Meadow Wind Farm repowering project will replace the existing turbines with newer more efficient components that will increase energy production, improve reliability, and extend the service life of the project.
The Grand Meadow Wind Farm repowering project was part of a slate of projects Xcel Energy proposed in response to a Commission request for utility investments that would aid in the state’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, while providing utility system benefits. These Commission-approved investments will save Xcel ratepayers throughout the region more than $200 million dollars in costs due to reduced fuel purchases and more efficient operations at the repowered wind farms.
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission regulates three cornerstone service industries in Minnesota’s economy; electricity, natural gas and telephone. The Commission’s mission is to create and maintain a regulatory environment that ensures safe, adequate and efficient utility services at fair, reasonable rates consistent with State telecommunications and energy policies. It does so by providing independent, consistent, professional and comprehensive oversight and regulation of utility service providers. Learn more at mn.gov/puc. Please contact Tricia DeBleeckere, (651) 201-2254 or email@example.com if you have any questions.