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Omaha Public Power District (OPPD) Pushes Ahead in Wind Energy

Today, the Omaha Public Power District (OPPD) board of directors  unanimously approved OPPD’s management plan to move forward with a 200 MW long-term power purchase from the Prairie Breeze Wind Farm scheduled to be operational in Elgin, Nebraska in early 2014.  The Wind Coalition applauds OPPD’s commitment to bringing clean, inexpensive, and reliable power to energy consumers in their region.  Wind Coalition executive director Jeff Clark commented, “Nebraska is uniquely blessed with vast wind resources that can serve that state’s energy needs well.  We commend OPPD’s vision and commitment to the clean energy and economic development benefits this contract will bring.”

Following is the release from the Omaha Public Power District:

OPPD Plan for Renewables Ahead of the Game

Yesterday, Omaha Public Power District’s Board of Directors unanimously approved OPPD’s senior management to move forward with entering into a long-term Power Purchase Agreement with Prairie Breeze Wind Energy, LCC.  The agreement would allow OPPD to purchase 200 megawatts (MW) of wind-generated energy from Prairie Breeze Wind Farm scheduled to be operational near Elgin, Neb., west of Norfolk by January 2014.

OPPD set a goal of having 10 percent of the electricity it sells to retail customers, approximately 400 MW, coming from renewable energy by 2020.  This new agreement will help OPPD reach its goal six years early.

“OPPD’s mission is to provide affordable, reliable and environmentally sensitive services to our customers,” said W. Gary Gates, OPPD’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “We know how important it is to our stakeholders, and we are constantly evaluating opportunities where it makes good sense to expand our renewable energy portfolio at the pace of value for our customer-owners.”

OPPD is currently involved with eight wind projects for a total of 212 MW.  These projects include Valley, 1 MW; Ainsworth, 10 MW; Elkhorn Ridge, 25 MW; Flatwater, 60 MW; Petersburg, 40 MW; Crofton Hills, 13 MW; Broken I, 18 MW; and Broken Bow II, 45 MW. Prairie Breeze would provide an additional 200 MW, giving OPPD a total of 412 MW.

The project is contingent on the approval from the Nebraska Power Review Board and if the federal Production Tax Credits are extended.

OPPD is one of the largest customer-owned electric utilities in the United States, serving more than 352,000 customers in 13 counties in southeast Nebraska.

For Additional Information, contact Mike Jones 402-636-3749 or Paula Lukowski 402-636-3759.


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