200-MW Odell Wind project in Minnesota whirls into commercial operation

Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. (TSX: AQN) announced Aug. 9 the achievement of commercial operation of the 200-MW Odell Wind Project, located in Cottonwood, Jackson, Martin and Watonwan counties, Minnesota, under the terms of the power purchase agreement (PPA) with an unnamed investment-grade utility.

Odell consists of 100 Vestas V110-2.0 MW wind turbine generators. The project qualified for the U.S. renewable energy production tax credits and tax equity investors provided an investment of approximately $180 million of equity financing toward project costs. The total capital cost of the facility was approximately $330 million.

Odell Wind has reported elsewhere that it has executed a long-term Power Purchase Agreement with Xcel Energy’s (NYSE: XEL) Northern States Power subsidiary for the entire capacity of the facility.

The facility enjoys an excellent wind resource which will allow Odell to produce an average of 832 GW-hrs of electricity per year, with all energy sold under a 20 year power purchase agreement. Algonquin holds a 50% equity interest in the project, with the other 50% held by the original developer. Algonquin has provided notice of intent to exercise its option to purchase the remaining 50% of the project. The company expects to acquire the remaining 50% upon receipt of regulatory approvals, which is anticipated to occur in the fourth quarter of 2016.

“We are pleased to continue delivering on our planned growth pipeline for 2016 with the successful completion of the Odell wind farm,” said Chief Executive Officer Ian Robertson. “Odell’s strong wind resource in a new geographic region and its long-term power purchase agreement make it an outstanding addition to our fleet of renewable generation facilities.”

Algonquin Power & Utilities is a North American diversified generation, transmission and distribution utility. The distribution business group provides rate regulated water, electricity and natural gas utility services to over 560,000 customers in the United States. The generation business group owns a portfolio of North American based contracted wind, solar, hydroelectric and natural gas powered generating facilities representing more than 1,300 MW of installed capacity. The transmission business group invests in rate regulated electric transmission and natural gas pipeline systems in the United States and Canada.

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.