Minnesota PUC approves $210M investment for Xcel Energy Northern Wind project

Published on June 15, 2021 by Chris Galford

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Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) approved a proposal for an additional $210 million investment into Xcel Energy’s wind repower portfolio through its Northern Wind modernization project.

The 120 MW effort spans three state wind farms — Chanarambie, Viking, and Rock Aetna — all located in southwest Minnesota. Funds for each are meant to support the state’s larger economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic by creating approximately 200 jobs and benefits for the local economy.

“I am pleased to see another project supporting the sustainable economic recovery of southwest Minnesota, and I appreciate this additional wind repower investment presented by Xcel Energy,” Commissioner Joseph Sullivan said. “For energy consumers, increasing the efficiency of wind farms adds value, lowers costs, and creates jobs.”

The Northern Wind project will also represent an expanded green push in the region. It will be focused on swapping old turbines for modern, more efficient, and long-lasting counterparts. This will also have the benefit of lowering energy costs for Xcel Energy customers and reducing carbon emissions through the displacement of non-renewable energy sources.

“The Xcel Energy wind repower portfolio will help Minnesota avoid the emission of about two million tons of carbon through 2034,” Commissioner John Tuma said.