WPPI Energy and Invenergy on Aug. 3 unveiled an agreement that will advance plans for constructing the 132-megawatt Bishop Hill III Wind Energy Center in Henry County, Illinois.
WPPI Energy, a not-for-profit, regional power company, has entered into a power purchase agreement to buy the electricity from the facility through mid-2040 in order to serve its 51 member utilities and their customers across Wisconsin, Upper Michigan and Iowa.
WPPI Energy noted that Bishop Hill III Wind Energy Center is scheduled to begin commercial operation by mid-2018 and will create more than 150 jobs during construction and up to six full-time jobs once operational.
In addition, the project will generate more than $10 million in local economic development in its first 10 years of operation through tax payments, lease payments to participating landowners, and wages and benefits for employees.
"This agreement provides WPPI Energy with a highly cost-effective resource that will more than double the amount of wind energy in our power supply portfolio," said Mike Peters, president and CEO of WPPI Energy. "When the Bishop Hill III project comes online, our power supply will be more than 40% emission-free," he said.
Invenergy and its affiliated companies have developed more than 15,900 MW of projects that are in operation, construction or contracted, including wind, solar, natural gas-fueled power generation and energy storage projects.
WPPI Energy to buy electricity from Wisconsin solar facility
In other renewable energy news involving WPPI Energy, WPPI Energy and NextEra Energy Resources earlier this year announced plans to build a 100-MW solar energy center.
WPPI Energy has entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement to buy the electricity from the solar energy center to serve its member utilities and customers.
NextEra Energy Resources plans to build and operate the Point Beach Solar Energy Center on land adjacent to its existing Point Beach Nuclear Plant in Two Rivers, Wisconsin.
The Point Beach Solar Energy Center is scheduled to come online in 2021 and when completed will be the largest such facility in Wisconsin.