Windy Point/Windy Flats

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Windy Point/Windy Flats
Windy Point/Windy Flats is located in Washington (state)
Windy Point/Windy Flats
Location of Windy Point/Windy Flats
Country United States
Location Goldendale, Washington
Coordinates 45°44′31″N 120°43′32″W / 45.74194°N 120.72556°W / 45.74194; -120.72556Coordinates: 45°44′31″N 120°43′32″W / 45.74194°N 120.72556°W / 45.74194; -120.72556
Status Operational
Owner(s) Tuolumne Wind Project Authority (Phase I); CRG Partners - a Cannon Power Group affiliate (Phase II and III)
Power generation
Units operational 130 x 2.3 MW
20 x 2.0 MW
Make and model Siemens Wind Power
REpower
Nameplate capacity 400 MW (installed)
500 MW (max. planned)

The Windy Point/Windy Flats project is one of the largest wind farms in Goldendale, Washington, the United States.[1] The 90 square miles (230 km2) wind farm spans 26 miles (42 km) along the Columbia River ridgeline offering upon completion a capacity of 500 megawatts (MW).

Construction of 400 of the 500 MW was completed by the end of 2009. Cannon Power Group, the project developer, constructed the 400 MW in two phases within 18 months—Phase I (137 MW) and Phase II (262 MW). A third phase is planned for 2010.

The initial 400 MW represents an investment of over $1 billion.[2]

California will benefit from the Windy Point/Windy Flats project which could help the state meet its renewable energy goals since two California off-takers[further explanation needed] have purchased all 400 MW of power.

Additionally, the project has provided more than 350 jobs over the past two years, plus creating many additional permanent administrative and operational positions.

Location[edit]

A partial view of the Windy Points/Windy Flats project. Hundreds of windmills can be seen in the background.

The Windy Point/Windy Flats project is located in Goldendale, Washington, along the Columbia River some 100 miles (160 km) east of Portland, Oregon, 70 miles (100 km) south of Yakima, Washington, and 100 miles (160 km) west of the Tri-Cities. The terrain is generally rolling with an elevation of 1,620 feet (494 m) at the airport.

Purchasers[edit]

Phase I: 137 MW was completed in May 2009 and sold in July 2009 for $385 million to the Tuolumne Wind Project Authority – a California joint powers agency formed by the Turlock Irrigation District and the Walnut Energy Center Authority.

Phase II: The Southern California Public Power Authority (SCPPA) - a joint powers agency composed of eleven municipal utilities and one irrigation district – has agreed to purchase 262 MW of power in October 2009. An affiliate of Cannon Power Group will be the project owner, subject to an option to purchase the project in favor of SCPPA after five years.

Phase MW Components Buyer Timeline
Phase I

(Windy Point)

137.6
  • Over 20 miles (30 km) of roads
  • 9 miles (14 km) of transmission lines
  • 2 project substations
  • 62 turbines (42 Siemens 2.3 MW turbines and 20 RE power 2.0 MW turbines)
Sold for $385 million to the Tuolumne Wind Project Authority – a California joint powers agency formed by the Turlock Irrigation District and the Walnut Energy Center Authority
  • 07/09 – Sold to TWPA
  • Q2 09 - Project completed and power generation began
  • Q2 08 – Project broke ground
Phase II

(Windy Flats)

262.4
  • 34 miles (55 km) of roads
  • 11 miles (18 km) of transmission lines
  • 2 project substations
  • 114 Siemens 2.3 MW turbines
  • Power is being purchased by the Southern California Public Power Authority (SCPPA) - a joint powers agency composed of eleven municipal utilities and one irrigation district.
  • Cannon Power Group (CPG) financed the capital costs of the project using a combination of federal stimulus funding (over $170 million) and the pre-payment by SCPPA of a 20-year block of power from the project (over $500 million).
  • SCPPA is expected to finance its energy pre-payment by the issuance of tax exempt bonds and has an option to purchase the project after five years.
  • Q2 09 – Project broke ground
  • 10/09 - CPG closes a $178 million financing deal with Siemens Financial Services, Inc. to help fund an expansion of the project
  • 10/09 - First stage construction completed (30 MW)
  • 11/09 - Project receives $19.4 million in federal stimulus funds
  • 12/09 – Balance of Phase II completed
Phase III 100 TBD TBD TBD

Partners[edit]

Cannon’s other projects in development include the Valle del Sol Solar Project in San Bernardino County, California, and a utility-scale wind and solar project in Baja California, Mexico, immediately across the California-Mexico border.[3] Cannon anticipates developing 200-300 megawatts of clean renewable energy in Mexico for the California (U.S.) market.

The Maryhill Museum of Art has entered into an agreement with Cannon Power Group to site 15 wind turbines on the eastern end of the museum's 5,300 acres (21 km2) in SW Washington State. According to the American Wind Energy Association, this is believed to be the first wind energy project in the United States to generate revenues for a nonprofit museum.[4] The relationship is now positioned to generate more than $100,000 in revenue for the museum each year.

Financing[edit]

Cannon Power Group, a San Diego wind energy developer, closed a $178 million financing deal with Siemens Financial Services in October[when?], allowing it to expand an existing wind generation project in southern Washington State. Cannon combined a government grant with a pre-pay agreement involving a public power authority to complete the financial arrangement.[5] Cannon Power received a first $19.4 million tranche of stimulus grants.[6] The expansion of Windy Point/Windy Flats brought the capacity of the Windy Point/Windy Flats projects to 400 megawatts and total investment in excess of $1 billion.[7]

See also[edit]

References[edit]