MidAmerican Energy plans to commence construction of the new Ida Grove and O’Brien wind farms, which have a combined generation capacity which of 552MW, in the spring of 2016.
The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016.
"Wind is a key element of our company’s balanced approach to energy generation," said Mike Gehringer, vice president, renewable energy for MidAmerican Energy. "We’re extremely proud of the progress we’ve made over the last decade in developing wind as a resource for our customers, and this project demonstrates our commitment to doing even more."
The Ida Grove project will be the first wind farm built in Ida County, while O’Brien becomes the second major development for MidAmerican Energy in O’Brien County. The company’s Highland wind farm in O’Brien County is the largest land-based wind farm currently under construction in the United States and will be MidAmerican Energy’s largest wind farm upon completion late this year. Plans call for approximately 134 turbines and up to 301 megawatts of generation capacity at the new Ida Grove wind farm, and approximately 104 turbines and 250 megawatts of generation capacity at the new O’Brien wind farm.
Gehringer noted that MidAmerican Energy owns more wind generation than any other utility of its type and has helped make Iowa a national leader in wind energy. "By the end of 2015, more of our generation capacity will come from wind than from any other single source," he said. "Our investment in wind enables us to keep electricity rates stable and affordable for customers, provides economic development in the state and shows our commitment to environmental respect."
With the addition of the Ida Grove and O’Brien wind farms, MidAmerican Energy will operate wind farms in 23 Iowa counties. By the end of 2016, MidAmerican Energy’s wind assets in Iowa will include more than 2,000 turbines.