Gov. Rendell Opens Newest Pennsylvania Wind Power Project
Ceremony Marks Dedication of State’s Seventh Wind Farm
Pennsylvania Gov. Edward G. Rendell flipped a giant light switch at the Locust Ridge Wind Farm today (6/19) to welcome the state’s newest wind generation facility.
The governor was joined by representatives from Iberdrola — the world’s largest owner and operator of wind farms and owner of the Locust Ridge project, its first in the United States — and PPL Corporation, which is purchasing the energy from the project. Locust Ridge began delivering emission-free electricity earlier this year.
“Pennsylvania has enough wind power potential to provide electricity for nearly 5 million homes,” Rendell said. “By harnessing the power of the wind in our state, we are achieving the highest levels of environmental protection, creating jobs and investment in the fast-growing clean energy sector, and moving toward energy independence.”
The Locust Ridge project in Schuylkill County, Pa., features 13 of the latest-technology wind turbines, which stand about 400 feet tall and generate clean, renewable electricity.
Compared with the average generation mix in the regional electric grid, the project offsets over 85 million pounds of carbon dioxide — the equivalent of planting over 34,000 acres of trees or removing over 8,000 cars from the road each year.
Iberdrola is the global wind energy leader with 6,562 megawatts of renewable capacity worldwide.
“It is exciting that Pennsylvania is leading the drive toward energy independence and building solutions to climate change, like wind energy, which also grow the economy and protect electricity customers from potentially volatile fossil fuel prices,” said Brent Alderfer, Executive Vice-President, Iberdrola Renewable Energies USA. “Thanks to Governor Rendell’s leadership and commitment to renewable energy, Iberdrola looks forward to Locust Ridge being the first of many successful wind farms that we build together.”
Iberdrola, through its U.S. subsidiary, renewable energy marketer and developer Community Energy, Inc., has signed an agreement with PPL EnergyPlus for energy, capacity and renewable attributes from the Locust Ridge Wind Farm Project for 20 years.
“For PPL Corporation, making a 20-year commitment to buy the electricity generated at this wind farm was the right thing to do,” said William H. Spence, executive vice president and chief operating officer of PPL Corporation. “It was a smart business decision, and it fits right into our growing focus on renewable electricity generation.”
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