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United States

270MW Iowa compressed air project cancelled

UNITED STATES: A planned 270MW wind project utilising compressed-air energy storage has been cancelled.

The Iowa Stored Energy Project (ISEP), located at Dallas Centre near Des Moines, would have taken wind energy produced during off-peak times and stored it in sandstone as compressed air.

However, geological studies have shown the sandstone at the site is not suitable for the size of the project.

Speaking about the decision, Bob Schulte — who led the assessment on behalf of Iowa Stored Energy Park Project Agency (ISEPA) — said that the concept was still sound.

"The economic studies performed for ISEP show that an innovative project like this can be cost effective compared to conventional generation alternatives and supportive of additional wind-energy development in the region."

He continued: "While the compressed-air project concept and potential long-term economics are sound, due to geology limitations specific to the Dallas Centre site, the ISEPA members have easier, less expensive and less risky conventional alternatives to meet their customers’ future electric needs."

ISEPA represents 57 electrical utilities in Iowa, the Dakotas and Minnesota. It said the decision only reflected the ISEP project and that an announcement over further projects would be taken at a later date.

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