RES to build next phase of Lower Snake River wind project

Renewable Energy Systems Americas Inc. (RES Americas), has been selected as the balance of plant (BOP) constructor for phase two of the Lower Snake River wind project.

RES Americas was the original developer of the Lower Snake River wind farm.

Portland General Electric (NYSE:POR) said recently it has entered into an asset purchase agreement to acquire the development rights to the wind project from Puget Sound Energy (PSE), and that RES will serve as general contractor.

Portland General Electric said June 3 that cost of the 267-MW project could run up to $535m, excluding allowance for funds used during construction. The project should help PGE meet the state renewable standard.

Phase two of the Lower Snake River wind unit, located near Dayton, Wash., northeast of Walla Walla, is expected to employ up to 300 construction workers, and once operational, create about 18 full-time jobs. The 267-MW project will utilize 116 wind turbines manufactured by Siemens Energy, each with a nameplate generating capacity of 2.3 MW.  When complete in 2015, the project will provide enough clean, renewable energy to power 84,000 homes.

RES was the original developer of the Lower Snake River wind farm, and in 2009 sold the development assets to PSE, at which time PSE assumed the role of owner and developer of the project. RES Americas also performed the BOP construction on the 343 MW Lower Snake River Wind Project – Phase I, which was completed in 2012. PSE owns and operates that project.

PGE’s acquisition of phase two of the project from PSE is the result of a request for proposals for renewable resources that PGE issued last fall.  PGE found that of the 64 bids representing 39 distinct generating projects that were submitted in response, phase two of the Lower Snake River wind farm was the best-performing proposal.

Combined with PGE’s existing owned and contracted renewable power generating resources, PGE’s acquisition of phase two of the Lower Snake River wind farm will allow PGE to comply with state standards requiring the utility to supply 15% of the power it delivers to customers from qualifying renewable sources beginning in 2015.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.