South Dakota regulators grant permit to Crowned Ridge Wind II for 230-kV line, associated facilities

The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, in a Feb. 5 order, granted to Crowned Ridge Wind II, LLC (Crowned Ridge II) a permit to build a 230-kV transmission line and its associated facilities, subject to certain terms and conditions set forth in a settlement stipulation.

As noted in the order, the commission in April 2018 received a facility permit application from Crowned Ridge II, in which Crowned Ridge II said that it proposes to build an approximately seven-mile generation tie line and associated substation facilities that will connect the 300-MW Crowned Ridge Wind II facility to the Crowned Ridge Wind facility collector substation.

The planned Crowned Ridge Wind facilities will be permitted separately and are not included as part of the transmission project, the commission said in its order. The generation tie line will be located in Codington County, S.D., and is expected to be in service by Dec. 31. The commission also said that Crowned Ridge II estimates the total construction cost of the 230-kV transmission line and associated facilities to be about $9m.

Crowned Ridge II in May 2018 filed supplemental information in support of its application and the commission later that month held a public input hearing in Waverly, S.D. The commission added that Crowned Ridge II in December 2018 filed an update reducing the transmission line route to five miles. Crowned Ridge II and commission staff on Jan. 8 filed a joint motion for approval of settlement stipulation and a settlement stipulation.

The commission added that it considered the matter at its Feb. 1 regularly scheduled meeting, and that having reviewed the filings in the docket, and after making further inquiry of the parties, the commission voted unanimously to grant the joint motion. By approving the settlement stipulation, the commission grants Crowned Ridge II’s application, the commission said.

According to the settlement stipulation, Crowned Ridge II proposes to build the approximately five-mile generation tie line and associated facilities from the collector substation at Crowned Ridge Wind II to a dead-end transmission structure adjacent to the collector substation at Crowned Ridge Wind. Utilizing a breaker position at the Crowned Ridge Wind collector substation, the 300 MW from Crowned Ridge II will be aggregated with the 300 MW from the Crowned Ridge collector substation and conjoined to the Crowned Ridge 230-kV generation tie line, which will terminate at the reactive compensation substation adjacent to the Big Stone South substation, the stipulation noted.

The terms and conditions include that if construction of any portion of the project begins more than four years after the date the permit is granted, Crowned Ridge II must certify to the commission before the construction begins that such facilities will meet the permit conditions.

Other terms and conditions include that Crowned Ridge II will negotiate road use agreements with Codington County, and all affected townships if required. Among other things, the stipulation also said that Crowned Ridge II is to promptly report to the commission the presence of any critical habitat of threatened or endangered species in the siting area that Crowned Ridge II becomes aware of and that was not previously reported to the commission.

As TransmissionHub reported, Crowned Ridge II is a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources (NEER).

About Corina Rivera-Linares 2807 Articles
Corina Rivera-Linares, chief editor for TransmissionHub, has covered the U.S. power industry for the past 13 years. Before joining TransmissionHub, Corina covered renewable energy and environmental issues, as well as transmission, generation, regulation, legislation and ISO/RTO matters at SNL Financial. She has also covered such topics as health, politics and education for weekly newspapers and national magazines. She can be reached at corinar@pennwell.com.