Ainsworth Wind Energy Facility
The Ainsworth Wind Energy Facility is the state’s largest publicly-owned wind farm. Located six miles south of Ainsworth, Neb., the facility has been in operation since 2005, generating over 1 billion kilowatt hours of wind-powered electricity for NPPD’s customers. The facility, which operates with 36, 1.65 megawatt turbines, is also the second largest publicly-owned wind farm in the country.
Springview Wind Energy Facility
Nebraska’s first wind-energy generation facility was constructed in 1998 west of Springview, Neb. After 10 years of operation, the 1.5 megawatt facility was decommissioned and sold, primarily due to the lack of spare parts needed to keep the turbines operational. In 2011, the facility figuratively rose up again as Blue Stem LLC, installed two, 1.5 megawatt direct-drive wind turbines, a new technology that NPPD will be looking at for future possible use, at the site.
Elkhorn Ridge Wind Farm
A request for proposal was issued in 2008 for wind farms to be built in the state that would sell electric power to NPPD. The first privately-owned and operated wind farm in Nebraska was the Elkhorn Ridge Wind Farm, located northwest of Bloomfield, Neb. Commercial operation began in 2009 following a power purchase agreement being reached between NPPD and the Edison Mission Group, which maintains the daily operational activities of the facility. As it did with the Ainsworth Wind Energy Facility, NPPD sells portions of the output to other Nebraska utilities. NPPD takes 40 megawatts of power from the facility, with Omaha Public Power District taking 25, the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska – eight, Lincoln Electric System – six, and the City of Grand Island – one.
Laredo Ridge Wind Farm
A request for proposal was issued in 2009 for wind farms to be built in the state that would sell electric power to NPPD. An 80-megawatt project was proposed near Petersburg, Neb., and was selected by NPPD. Commercial operation began in 2010. NPPD has a power purchase agreement with Edison Mission Group for the electrical output of the facility. As it did with the Ainsworth Wind Energy Facility, NPPD sells portions of the output to other Nebraska utilities. NPPD takes 61 megawatts of power from the facility, the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska – eight, Lincoln Electric System – ten, and the City of Grand Island – one.
Broken Bow Wind Farm
Broken Bow, NE
In its request for proposal in 2009, NPPD asked private developers to propose a wind farm for the Broken Bow, Neb., area. NPPD reached an agreement with Broken Bow Wind, LLC, for an 80 megawatt wind farm just east of the community which became commercial December 1, 2012. NPPD;s share of the output will be 51 megawatts with Omaha Public Power District taking 18, Lincoln Electric System 10, and the City of Grand Island one.
Fifty General Electric 1.6-megawatt turbines are located on farm and ranch land north and east of Broken Bow.
Steele Flats Wind Farm
Near the Kansas border between Steele City and Odell
NPPD entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement in early 2013 with NextEra Energy resources, a Juno Beach, Fla.-based company, for wind farm known as the Steele Flats Wind Farm. Located in southern Nebraska near the Kansas border between Steele City and Odell, the facility began commercial operation on November 1, 2013. The Steele Flats Wind Farm is capable of generating 75 megawatts of electricity from the 44, 1.7- megawatt turbines that have been constructed near Highway 8 in Jefferson and Gage counties.
NPPD will be taking the entire output of the facility, but will be selling 30 megawatts of renewable energy credits from the facility to BD (Becton, Dickinson Company), a New Jersey company with operations in Columbus, Neb., and Holdrege, Neb., as part of that company’s sustainable energy initiative.
Crofton Bluffs Wind Farm
This 42-megawatt wind facility became commercial on November 1, 2012. The facility is located southwest of Crofton, Neb., and is owned and operated by Edison Mission Group. A power purchase agreement has been reached with EMG following the purchase from Community Wind Energy and Transmission in 2011. The project was a result of the first round of requests for proposals that were conducted in 2008. NPPD will take 21 megawatts of the output of the facility with Omaha Public Power District taking 14, the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska four, and Lincoln Electric System three.
Two, 3-megawatt Vestas turbines and 20, 1.8-megawatt Vestas turbines are located on mostly farm land.