Library from Iowa
A major component of Alliant Energy's New Energy for a New Generation plan first announced in January has attracted a long list of critics. By last week's deadline to petition against Alliant Energy's proposal to sell all of its Interstate Power & Light Company electric transmission assets to Michigan-based ITC Midwest LLC, 23 businesses, organizations or associations had filed an intervention with the Iowa Utilities Board. Alliant leaders said the sale is hoped to help defray the $1 billion cost of the proposed power plant in Marshalltown, another component to the plan alongside new wind farms in the state.
Wind turbines are a very real possibility for Adair County in the near future. MidAmerican Energy will be erecting six meteorological towers immediately to measure wind velocity and to gather information on wind patterns in Adair and Union counties. Representatives from MidAmerican met with Adair County residents at Orient-Macksburg High School May 24 to discuss plans for installing wind turbines. Brian Rohrig of rural Orient attended the meeting and said MidAmerican's plans seemed well-received.
The state's Public Service Commission today approved construction of Madison Gas and Electric's "Top of Iowa Wind Farm" in northern Iowa. It will have 18 turbines capable of producing about 30 megawatts of power.
Negotiations for placement of power lines for a proposed 100-turbine wind farm near Crystal Lake are about 90 percent complete, according to a energy company spokesman. FPL Energy LLC, a subsidiary of Florida Power and Light based in Juno, Fla., wants to install 161-kilowatt transmission lines to bring power from the wind farm to the Lime Creek Power Station, which is located south of Manly.
Dallas Center residents who want a firsthand account of how a proposed $200 million power plant would affect their community will have that opportunity Thursday. That's when Kent Holst, who oversees an Iowa municipal utilities energy plant project, and his associates will give a presentation on the project to store wind energy in the form of compressed air in an underground rock formation. The officials will take questions from the public following their presentation at 7 p.m. Thursday at Dallas Center Memorial Hall, 1502 Walnut St.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP)--Alliant Energy plans to buy and develop a wind energy farm that could become the largest in Iowa, producing up to 200 megawatts of electricity. Key parts of the farm's wind turbines would be assembled at a factory in Cedar Rapids, according to the announcement April 25 by a Cedar Rapids-based division of Alliant. Alliant's plan is the second major Iowa wind energy project to be announced this month.
CHARLES CITY - Mid-American Energy is considering Floyd County as a possible site for a 50-turbine wind energy farm. The energy company, which already has wind turbines in Wright, Hamilton, Crawford, Carroll, Crawford, Pocahontas, Buena Vista and Sac counties, is planning to put another 300 to 400 turbines at various sites in north-central, northwest and/or west-central Iowa to produce an additional 540 megawatts of wind energy, according to Allan Urlis, a spokesman for Mid-American Energy.
Next week Acciona Windpower will begin construction work next week on its first wind turbine plant in the United States - in West Branch. The facility, to be built at the site of the old Sauer-Danfoss building, is expected to be operational by the end of the year. It represents an investment of $23 million and will produce 250 wind turbines in 2008 using in-house technology.
MidAmerican Energy announced plans Thursday to nearly double its capacity to produce electricity in Iowa with wind turbine power. The investment could approach nearly $1 billion, said Greg Abel, president of Des Moines-based MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. MidAmerican's expansion plans include erecting one wind turbine at the Iowa State Fairgrounds to produce electricity and draw attention to wind energy in Iowa.
"By itself, it cannot be the solution because wind by its nature is an intermittent source of power," said Bill Haman, industrial program manager and alternate energy revolving loan program manager for the Iowa Energy Center. "Therefore we as a society cannot rely on wind as our primary energy source, but it certainly can play a part as a piece of the solution when combined with both fossil and renewable sources."
ALEXANDER - Wind Capital Group, based in St. Louis, has proposed building a wind farm on 11,000 acres in Franklin County. The 150-megawatt Buffalo Creek Wind Farm would lie north of Highway 3 between Alexander and Latimer, said Dean Baumgardner, senior vice president of development and operations for Wind Capital. The project would include 60 to 90 turbines and cost from $200 million to $300 million. It would serve Iowa homes and businesses.
Gov. Chet Culver on March 29 outlined one of his key legislative proposals - the Iowa Power Fund. At stops in Cedar Rapids and Ankeny, the governor presented his vision for the future of renewable energy in Iowa, and laid out specific proposals to keep Iowa ahead in the race to become the renewable energy capital of the world. "Today, Iowa begins taking the lead in the race to become the energy capital of the world," said Culver. "Our $100 million Iowa Power Fund will allow Iowa to invest in and attract cutting edge research and development. "It will allow our state to be involved in commercialization of emerging technologies. It will allow existing companies to expand and grow to meet the needs of emerging markets. It will help us create the jobs of the future that will keep your kids and my kids here in Iowa where they belong. This effort is at the heart of the 21st Century Iowa Expedition I have called on all Iowans to join."
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A group of utilities in Iowa, Minnesota and the Dakotas plan to spend $200 million on a project in Iowa that would store energy generated by wind turbines. The Iowa Stored Energy Park would essentially act as a "battery" for wind energy, said Bob Haub, executive director of the Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities. Wind farms in Iowa, Minnesota and the Dakotas would ship energy over the power grid to the storage park near Des Moines. Xcel Energy and the federal government are experimenting with ways to "store" wind power in the form of hydrogen, but the Iowa project would employ a far simpler strategy that would include the following steps:
What is the latest renewable energy project about to get underway in Mitchell County? The answer (my friend) is blowin’ In the wind. A local man who wishes to remain anonymous at this time is currently developing a 20-megawatt wind farm that will be located just a few miles north of Osage. The project, already a year and a half in the making, is tentatively being called the “Cedar River Wind Farm.” The $30 million operation would consist of eight 2.5-megawatt wind turbines which would interconnect with an Alliant Energy 69,000-volt transmission line at the Kirkwood Avenue substation at Osage.
A Mitchell County man is developing a plan for a $30 million, 20-megawatt wind farm owned by local investors a few miles north of Osage. The project is tentatively being called the Cedar River Wind Farm and would have eight 2.5-megawatt wind turbines that would connect with an Alliant Energy 69,000-volt transmission line at the Kirkwood Avenue Substation at Osage. The man said he wished to remain anonymous, but information about the project was confirmed by Mitchell County Economic Development Director Brenda Dryer, who is assisting in the project.
The Board of Supervisors moved closer on Tuesday to a wind energy ordinance that could attract renewable energy businesses to Floyd County. The Supervisors passed the first reading of an ordinance which would offer a tax exemption to new wind farms or turbines. Wind energy producers would receive a tax exemption on a 20-year, sliding scale. The first year of operation the owner would be taxed on zero percent of the net acquisition costs, adding five percent until year seven, when the rate would stay at 30 percent. No comments were given during a public hearing on the ordinance.
Todd Nelsen of the Audubon County Board of Supervisors and Dan Ahart, Audubon County engineer, met recently with Stu Webster of California-based Clipper Windpower, Inc. Clipper Windpower is interested in putting up approximately 25 wind turbines in Audubon County. Stu Webster is the manager of permits at Clipper Windpower. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss permits and concerns the county might have with the development and construction of a wind farm. Approval from Clipper Windpower for a reporter to speak directly with Webster has yet to be attained. According to Ahart, Clipper would need entrance permits and potentially, utility permits. As for zoning permits, according to Nelsen, they would need a permit to build. Nelsen feels Audubon County does not want to hinder the possibility of a wind farm, but at the same time, doesn’t want to be a doormat and not ask questions about how the construction will affect secondary roads, bridge work, conservation land and set-back distance of the turbines. the meeting with Webster did calm their fears a bit.
The Floyd County Board of Supervisors is considering an ordinance that would offer tax breaks for the installation of wind energy turbines. A public hearing on the proposed ordinance will be held at 10 a.m. Feb. 13 in the board of supervisors room at the Floyd County Courthouse. The board reviewed wind energy ordinances from Franklin, Mitchell and Cerro Gordo counties recently before setting the public hearing. The state of Iowa allows cities and counties to set a sliding scale for assessment of wind energy conversion property, according to Floyd County Assessor Bruce Hovden.
A wind farm with 10 turbines could break ground five miles south of Thompson later this year or in early 2008. The Midwest Renewable Energy Corporation is planning the 20 megawatt wind farm. Project manager Victor Austin said the 10 turbines are meant to be the start of what eventually will be a larger wind farm. However, that won’t happen for several more years. “It’s just in the formative idea stage,” Austin said.
Two representatives of a California firm which last May began investigating the possibility of a local wind farm for electrical generation were in Guthrie County last week to meet with zoning administrator Barry Stetzel who said he was impressed by the prospects. Stetzel was at a proposed site in southwestern Guthrie County Wednesday with the development project manager and permitting manger of Clipper Windpower Inc. The zoning administrator said the site, which he would not specifically identify, would have 55 windchargers in Guthrie County and 25 in Audubon County. Besides meeting with Stetzel about permitting and zoning for the windchargers and substation sites, the Clipper Windpower reps also met with county engineer Kris Katzmann about use of county right-of-way for underground electrical lines as none will be constructed above ground. Preliminary studies have shown the county has enough wind to be a viable site. A test anemometer, 300 feet off the ground, is still collecting wind readings at a rural Adair farm. If constructed, the proposed windpark would require a $170.5 million investment by Clipper Windpower Inc.