Southern Power to buy 151-MW Grant Wind project in Oklahoma from Apex

Southern Co. (NYSE: SO) subsidiary Southern Power on Sept. 9 announced an agreement to acquire the company’s second wind project – the 151-MW Grant Wind facility in Oklahoma – from Apex Clean Energy.

The acquisition is expected to close in March 2016 upon successful completion of project construction. In March, Southern Power announced an agreement to acquire its first wind project – the 299-MW Kay Wind facility in Oklahoma, also from Apex Clean Energy – which is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2015.

“Southern Company is committed to the full portfolio and this project is an important step in further expanding our fuel mix,” said Southern Co. Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning. “Our second wind project and one of Southern Power’s more than 20 renewable projects across America, the Grant Wind facility is a smart investment that expands our company’s presence in a region with exceptional wind resources.”

With the addition of the Grant Wind facility, Southern Power’s renewable ownership is expected to reach more than 1,600 MW, with 21 solar, wind and biomass facilities either announced, acquired or under construction. Across its system, Southern Co., which has utility subsidiaries like Georgia Power, has added or announced more than 3,400 MW of renewable generation since 2012.

Located in Grant County, Oklahoma, the Grant Wind project is expected to utilize 66 wind turbines manufactured by Siemens. Apex Clean Energy is managing the construction of Grant Wind and, upon completion, will operate and maintain the facility. IEA Renewable Energy, a wholly owned subsidiary of Infrastructure and Energy Alternatives (IEA), is serving as the engineering, procurement and construction contractor. Construction began in August, and the wind farm is expected to achieve commercial operation in March 2016.

The electricity and associated renewable energy credits (RECs) generated by the Grant Wind facility will be sold under 20-year power purchase agreements with Western Farmers Electric Cooperative, East Texas Electric Cooperative and Northeast Texas Electric Cooperative. The companies have each contracted for approximately 50 MW and will have the option to either keep or sell the RECs.

The Grant Wind project fits Southern Power’s business strategy of growing its wholesale business through the acquisition and construction of generating assets substantially covered by long-term contracts.

Southern Power is a leading U.S. wholesale energy provider meeting the electricity needs of municipalities, electric cooperatives and investor-owned utilities. With the completion of this acquisition, Southern Power and its subsidiaries will own or have rights to 30 facilities operating or under construction in nine states with more than 10,200 MW of capacity in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas.

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.