Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) said today it plans to build and own a 300-MW wind farm in South Dakota, the first publicly announced wind project to move forward under the phase-down of the production tax credit (PTC).
The Dakota Range I and II project has been developed by Apex Clean Energy and is expected to be completed in 2021, subject to approval from regulators. It will use Vestas turbines.
Xcel Energy said the project put it on track to be the first utility in US to exceed 10 GW of wind on its system. The scheme brings the company's proposed wind farms to 13, representing 3,680 MW of capacity across seven states.
The utility said that the project is cheap enough to compete on cost with other fuel sources even without the full tax credit and it is expected to lower customer bills over its life.
"The Dakota Range project is important because it shows us that the American wind industry continues to deliver clean, reliable, cost-competitive energy even as the value of the production tax credit is reduced," commented Tom Kiernan, chief executive of the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).