Carousel Wind Farm construction underway in eastern Colo.

Anchor-installation250With construction now underway on the 150-megawatt Carousel Wind Farm in eastern Colorado, Tri-State is looking forward to adding its largest wind resource to date to its growing renewable resource portfolio, when the project is slated for completion in 2016.

In December 2013, Tri-State signed a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC (the owner of the generating facility) to purchase the entire output and the associated environmental attributes of the Carousel Wind Farm.

The project site, which is entirely within the service territory of Tri-State member K. C. Electric Association (Hugo, Colo.), will encompass 34,500 acres, a parcel that extends east all the way to the Kansas border. This wind farm will utilize a total of 87 General Electric wind turbines. Of those turbines, a total of 81 are rated for a maximum of 1.715 megawatts of capacity and six of the turbines are slightly larger at 1.79 megawatts. Annual energy production from the new wind farm is approximately 664,500 megawatt-hours, according to Susan Hunter, Tri-State’s business development manager of energy resources.

The Carousel Wind Farm will be the third wind facility to produce power for Tri-State. The association also has PPAs for the output of the nearby 51-megawatt Kit Carson Windpower site (near Burlington, Colo.) and the 91-megawatt Colorado Highlands Wind farm located about 25 miles northeast of Sterling, Colo.

The new wind farm will interconnect to the Tri-State system at the association’s existing Burlington Substation.

Concurrent to Carousel Wind Farm’s construction is the construction of the 72-mile, 230-kV, Burlington to Wray transmission line. This transmission project will boost capacity and reliability to better serve existing and anticipated loads in the area as well as provide the needed capacity and infrastructure for the Carousel Wind Farm. Construction of the new line, along with upgrades to both the Burlington and Wray substations, are on schedule for the spring of 2016.

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