Balko Wind project in Oklahoma started producing test energy on April 24

Balko Wind Transmission LLC, which controls the grid interconnect facilities for a newly-operational wind project in Oklahoma, filed on May 5 at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission a notice of self-certification as an exempt wholesale generator.

Balko Transco owns and operates certain transmission facilities used to interconnect to the transmission grid an approximately 299.7 MW (nameplate) wind facility located in Beaver County, Oklahoma, that is owned and operated by Balko Transco’s parent company, Balko Wind LLC.

Balko Wind is currently controlled up through a chain of companies by D. E. Shaw & Co. LP (DESCO LP). D. E. Shaw & Co. Inc. is the general partner of DESCO LP.

The facility consists of wind facilities and associated equipment, including a 345-kV, approximately five-mile transmission line and associated facilities leading from the facility’s collection substation to the point of interconnection with the electric transmission system owned by Oklahoma Gas and Electric and under the operational control of the Southwest Power Pool. This transmission line and associated facilities are owned by Balko Transco and currently are used solely to interconnect Balko Wind’s electric generating facilities to the electric transmission system.

Balko Wind is committed to sell the full output of the facility under 20-year power purchase agreements with two non-affiliates: Public Service Co. of Oklahoma (PSCO) and Western Farmers Electric Cooperative (WFEC). The facility began generating test energy on April 24, 2015. The power purchase agreement with WFEC, representing 100 MW of the facility’s approximately 300 MW of capacity, commences at the commercial operation date. The power purchase agreement with PSCO, representing an output of 200 MW, commences in January 2016.

Balko Wind previously filed with the commission a notice of self-certification of EWG status in which it stated that the Gen-Tie Interconnection Facilities were part of the facility owned and operated by Balko Wind. The description of the Facility in that filing was based on an incorrect understanding that the Gen-Tie Interconnection Facilities initially would be owned directly by Balko Wind and would be transferred to Balko Transco at a later date (subject to appropriate regulatory filings and approvals); in fact, the Gen-Tie Interconnection Facilities became owned by Balko Transmission immediately upon completion of construction of the Gen-Tie Interconnection Facilities in April 2015. Although the Gen-Tie Interconnection Facilities were included as part of the “eligible facilities” described in the Balko Wind notice of self-certification, Balko Transmission is filing this separate notice of self-certification out of an abundance of caution to ensure the EWG status of Balko Transmission.

A company contact is: Nathan Thomas, Chief Compliance Officer
, The D. E. Shaw Group, 
1166 Avenue of the Americas, Ninth Floor, New York, NY 10036,
(212) 478-0000

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.