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Michigan approves PPA for 120MW wind farm

UNITED STATES: The Michigan Public Service Commission has approved a $485-million 20-year power-purchase agreement (PPA) between Detroit utility DTE Energy and the 120MW Tuscola Bay wind farm.

Developed by the project company Tuscola Bay Wind — owned by NextEra Energy Resources — the project will be located on a 9,000-acre site in the Michigan counties of Tuscola Bay and Saginaw.

DTE Energy will purchase all of the energy produced by the project, which is currently in the engineering phase. Construction is expected to start next year and take six to nine months, with a capital cost of $250 million.

The 20-year, $485-million PPA is part of DTE Energy's efforts to expand the company's renewable-energy resources.

To meet the state's renewable-energy goals, DTE Energy expects to add about 1GW, or 10% of its power, from renewable-energy sources by 2015. DTE Energy plans to own facilities to supply up to half of that power and contract with third-party producers, such as NextEra, for the rest.

DTE Energy expects the majority of its renewable energy to come from wind resources, but the company also has a pilot solar-energy programme that could produce approximately 20MW.

DTE Energy also announced it has selected Southfield, Michigan-based Barton Malow to build the three DTE Energy wind farms in Huron and Sanilac counties next year. The company selected General Electric to provide around 70 wind turbines to be sited at the wind farms, which will total around 110MW. Initial delivery of the wind turbines is expected next summer.

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