Number Three Wind Energy LLC (NTW) on April 17 filed with the New York State Public Service Commission an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity – as well as a petition to establish lightened regulation – in relation to NTW’s proposal to build, own, and operate the Number Three Wind Farm, a wind electric generating facility with a rated capacity up to 105.8 MW, located in the towns of Lowville and Harrisburg in Lewis County, N.Y.
The proposed facility is undergoing comprehensive review by the New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment in Case 16-F-0328 for a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need (CECPN), NTW said.
In other siting board proceedings, the siting board has limited the scope of the commission’s Public Service Law (PSL) § 68 review to issuance of a CPCN to own and operate the proposed facility because matters of public need and authorization to build are subsumed in Article 10 review, NTW said, noting that that approach is consistent with similar proceedings requiring a CECPN and Section 68 approval. Accordingly, the commission should “only act on its police power functions related to the entity,” NTW noted, adding that NTW is filing its application for a CPCN now so that the commission may be able to act on it at the time the siting board proceeding reaches a determination on NTW’s application for a CECPN.
NTW – an affiliate of Invenergy Renewables LLC – said that granting the requested relief is in the public interest because development of the proposed facility would help meet the state’s goals of increasing the use of renewable energy resources in New York, lowering harmful air emissions, including greenhouse gases reducing dependence on fossil fuels, increasing fuel diversity, and stimulating economic development.
Further discussing the project, NTW said that the proposed facility would have a maximum generating capability of 105.8 MW, which is the size of NTW’s interconnection service request pending with the New York ISO (NYISO). The proposed facility would consist of 31 wind turbines located on land leased from owners of private property located in Lowville and Harrisburg, NTW said.
Proposed facility components would include commercial-scale wind turbines, access roads, an electrical collection system including lines connecting the wind turbines to a project substation, meteorological towers, an operation and maintenance (O&M) building, as well as electrical interconnection facilities, NTW said.
The company noted that it has entered into land agreements for about 10,000 acres of private land allowing for the construction and operation of the proposed facility and supporting infrastructure and equipment; NTW has executed purchase options for the land required for the project substation, switchyard, and O&M building.
Electrical interconnection facilities would include a 115-kV point of interconnection switchyard built adjacent to National Grid’s Lowville-Bremen 115-kV transmission line and an overhead 115-kV interconnection line, NTW said.
Noting that it initially applied for authority to install up to 43 turbines in order to ensure that the proposed facility would deliver up to the 105.8-MW interconnection requested, NTW said that it has since reduced the maximum number of turbines to 31 based on use of 26 GE 3.6-137 and 5 GE 2.3-116 wind turbine generators.
Each turbine would consist of an enclosed monopole support tower, a nacelle atop each tower containing electrical generating equipment, and a three-blade rotor attached to each nacelle, NTW said, adding that the maximum tip height of the WTG’s would be between 450 feet and 600 feet above ground.
NTW noted that it has completed its application for interconnection to the New York State electric system administered by the NYISO for connection to transmission facilities owned and controlled by Niagara Mohawk Power d/b/a National Grid. The proposed facility has been assigned #531 in the interconnection queue with an anticipated in-service date of September 2020, NTW said, adding that as a result, it requests that the commission grant its petition simultaneously or in conjunction with the completion of the siting board proceeding.
Among other things, NTW said that the proposed facility would sell its energy output into the wholesale markets through the spot markets administered by the NYISO. NTW noted that it would sell renewable attributes associated with the facility’s electricity under a contract executed with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) in 2016, which was awarded under a request for proposals.
That RFP allocated a total funding commitment of about $360m with a weighted average price for those contracts estimated at $24.24 per renewable portfolio standard program (RPS) attribute, NTW said.