Farmland Partners to lease land for 208-MW wind project in North Carolina

Farmland Partners Inc. (NYSE: FPI) announced Oct. 6 that two of its farms in North Carolina will be home to a portion of the 208-MW Amazon Wind Farm US East project that Iberdrola Renewables is building and will own and operate.

The wind farm will deliver power to the electrical grid that supplies both current and future Amazon Web Services Inc. (AWS) Cloud data centers. The wind farm will be situated on approximately 28 acres of farmland owned by Farmland Partners. It will lease the 28 acres to Iberdrola Renewables for approximately $2,600 per acre over a 25-year lease term.

“Renewable energy projects have the potential to increase the returns we generate from our farm holdings. We are highlighting this transaction for investors because it is illustrative of the upside opportunities that our stockholders may derive from our ownership of farmland,” said Paul Pittman, CEO of the company. “This and other renewable energy projects under consideration are examples of how we pursue opportunities to increase rents on our land by finding additional revenue sources beyond traditional farm leases.”

Farmland Partners is an internally managed real estate company that owns and seeks to acquire high-quality North American farmland and makes loans to farmers secured by farm real estate.

Amazon Web Services, an Amazon.com company (NASDAQ: AMZN), said July 13 that it has contracted with Iberdrola Renewables to construct and operate a 208-MW wind farm in Perquimans and Pasquotank counties, North Carolina. Called the Amazon Wind Farm US East, this project is expected to start generating approximately 670,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of wind energy annually starting December 2016. AWS said July 13 that when completed, it will be the first utility-scale wind farm in the state of North Carolina, with the energy generated delivered into the electrical grid that supplies both current and future AWS Cloud data centers.

In November 2014, AWS shared its long-term commitment to achieve 100% renewable energy usage for the global AWS infrastructure footprint. In April 2015, AWS announced that about 25% of the power consumed by its global infrastructure was from renewable energy sources with a goal of increasing that to at least 40% by the end of 2016. The company said it continues to launch projects that increase the availability of renewable energy resources on the electrical grids that supply power to current and future AWS Cloud data centers in Virginia and Ohio.

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.