Articles filed under General from Texas

Plan to add wind farm land heads to council

On the mesas of West Texas, wind turbines are now as much a part of the landscape as tumbleweeds and big skies, but they are still generally perceived as the kind of projects that require the backing of a daring entrepreneur. That might be changing. Electric utilities, which historically have been averse to investing in technologies they consider risky, are beginning to look to wind farms.
25 Feb 2010

Commissioners learn wind farm put on hold

Young County commissioners learned Monday that a proposed wind farm may be years away. ..."They're going to do it, but they're looking at two to four years down the road," Wiley said. "They put it out for bids for the electricity and got no bids. Another problem is where we're at, they can get the electricity, but they have no way to get it where it needs to be."
24 Feb 2010

Garland city attorney and PUC spar over release

Tempers flared as an obviously miffed Texas Public Utility Commission assailed a Garland city attorney Friday over a news release in which he called a court ruling reversing a commission order "a big win for Texas ratepayers." The meeting in Austin featured uncharacteristically heated and personal exchanges, coming on the heels of a Jan. 15 ruling by state District Judge Stephen Yelenosky of Austin.
29 Jan 2010

Pickens reduces order for wind turbines, puts Panhandle wind farm on hold

T. Boone Pickens has cut his massive order for wind turbines from GE by more than half. The energy investor, who made wind power a key part of his plan to wean Americans off foreign oil, said Tuesday he will now take delivery of 300 turbines, which he will use for wind farms in Canada and Minnesota. ...He also acknowledged it's not possible to use wind exclusively for power generation.
13 Jan 2010

Wartsila wins gas-fired power plant contract

Global decentralised power generation provider, Wartsila, has won a contract to supply a 170-MW gas-fired power plant for the Antelope Station, located near Texas, USA. The power plant is to be located close to significant wind farm generation, and will serve to stabilise the grid when the output from the wind farms change unexpectedly.
11 Jan 2010

SPI wind farm looks years away at the earliest

So far, talk of wind farms off South Padre Island has been just that: wind. However, giant turbines offshore may be closer to reality now that the state has awarded leases to two companies studying their feasibility along the Texas coast. One is Baryonyx Corporation, which in July signed a contract with the Texas General Land Office to lease 8,000 onshore acres in Dallam County in the Texas panhandle and 38,000 acres off South Padre Island and Mustang Island.
14 Dec 2009

After outcry, 2 companies shift their turbine plans

Two companies that encountered political anger for their plans to use Chinese-built turbines on a wind farm in West Texas have announced plans to build a new turbine factory - in the United States. The U.S. Renewable Energy Group, an investment firm, and A-Power Energy Generation Systems, a Chinese turbine maker, said in a statement on Tuesday that they had signed an agreement to build "a new production and assembly plant in the United States that will supply highly advanced wind energy turbines to renewable energy projects throughout North and South America."
18 Nov 2009

Lack of power lines blow to wind energy; Time, money becomes obstacle for industry

Driving through western Kansas, you'll see hundreds of whirling wind turbines. But you won't see lots of people - or high-voltage power lines. And that is the big obstacle to realizing the wind-energy potential of Kansas and the Midwest: You can put up all the towers and turbines you like, but without more transmission lines, the added electricity won't get to the cities that could use it. Those lines will take years to build and cost tens of billions of dollars - if they are built at all.
16 Nov 2009

China to supply turbines and funding for $1.5bn Texas wind farm

A Sino-US consortium yesterday announced plans for a US$1.5 billion, 600MW wind farm in Texas, with China supplying all the turbines and most of the funding. The 36,000-acre wind farm a joint venture between state-backed Chinese firm Shenyang Power Group, US wind farm developer Cielo Wind Power and private equity firm US Renewable Energy Group. Most of the funding for the project will come from Chinese banks, with loan guarantees and grants provided by the US federal government's economic stimulus package.
30 Oct 2009

Texas might see wind power slowdown

Texas, which produces more energy than any other U.S. state, may see a slowdown in expanding wind generation this year and in 2010 as low natural-gas prices make new plants less profitable, state utility regulator Barry Smitherman said.
16 Oct 2009

Texas power suppliers facing wind challenges

A doubling of wind-generated electric capacity anticipated in Texas by 2015 will alter operations of every power plant in the state, industry sources said on Wednesday. The rise in wind to an expected 18,500 megawatts of installed capacity will force aging, natural gas-fired power plants to shut, limit output at times from coal-fired plants and create a need for nimble, simple-cycle gas plants that investors are wary to build in the current market, said members of an industry panel at the Gulf Coast Power Association conference.
7 Oct 2009

Wind energy leaders discuss turbine challenges

As 37-mile-per-hour gusts blasted downtown Minneapolis on Thursday, hundreds of wind-energy executives were inside the Minneapolis Hilton, discussing the challenges their industry still faces. Chief among those challenges: weather-related down times and - perhaps more surprisingly - utilities unwilling to accept energy from wind farms because their high-voltage transmission lines can't accept any more power.
2 Oct 2009

World's largest wind farm opens in West Texas

German power giant E.On is expected to announce on Thursday that the world's largest wind farm, close to Sweetwater, Texas, is open for business and generating juice. The wind farm in Roscoe, just west of Sweetwater, boasts 627 wind turbines, with a total capacity of 781.5 megawatts. ...As some wind farm developers slow down in Texas, E.On keeps building.
1 Oct 2009

Texas utilities' rejection of stimulus funds could lead to higher bills for customers

The companies building Texas' $5 billion renewable-energy transmission network have decided against seeking stimulus funding that could have saved money for consumers. The decision was made last month in a little-noticed hearing of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, where regulators agreed with the companies that stimulus funds came with regulations that could slow construction.
30 Sep 2009

Wind may be blowing over there for a while

If you've been driving around the Permian Basin lately, you probably aren't as likely to have gotten stuck behind a truck pulling a giant wind turbine blade. While wind energy projects are still going on in other parts of West Texas, Gary Vest, economic development director for the Odessa Chamber of Commerce, said it would be a while before they start back up in the counties around Odessa. "It's kind of on hold," he said. "Any of them that are in progress already are still going, but they haven't been starting any new ones." Companies are waiting until construction on a $4.93 billion plan to connect transmission lines from West Texas to the state's population centers is closer to completion, Vest said. That isn't expected until 2013.
27 Sep 2009

Advocates concerned Austin Energy plans will hurt poor, elderly

As she sat at a small sunlit table by her apartment window, near the wheelchair and oxygen tank in the corner, Leona Morgan ticked off her monthly spending list. Rent: $550. Groceries: $300. Medicine for anemia, a heart condition and other ailments: $50 beyond what's covered by government health programs. Electric bill: $93.87 in August. "My income just barely covers what I have to spend," said Morgan, a sprightly, bone-thin 86-year-old, contemplating the possibility of soaring electric bills.
21 Sep 2009
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